Brian Papke is frustrated.
As president of Mazak Corporation in Florence, Ky., he is struggling to hire welders. In fact, Mazak has openings for 20 welders needed to help build precision metal cutting machines that will be sold to large manufacturers around the world.
But, after months of being unable to find applicants with the welding skills needed, Mazak is doing something rarely seen with blue collar jobs, it's offering a signing bonus.
Papke calls it a $2,500 bounty Mazak will gladly pay to welders it hires. "We have to move quickly," said Papke. "Offering bounties was one of the fastest ways we could go to attract people into our welding programs."
Strange as it may sound, America's manufacturing companies are struggling to find enough qualified workers. In fact. over the last two years the number of manufacturing job openings in the U.S. has more than doubled.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 264,000 job openings in the manufacturing sector at the end of last year, compared with approximately 100,000 two years ago.
Even with the abundance of openings, companies have to go further than ever to find the right person to put on the factory floor. Seco Tools in Troy, Mich., has 11 job openings, with some paying up to $90,000 annually. It is now offering to pay up to $4,000 for the continuing education of people it hires.Page 1 of 3 | Next Page