Help Women Consider a Career in Manufacturing

Women are the "untapped resource" that can improve the shortage of skilled workers.


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The shortage of skilled workers in manufacturing has not improved, but there is an “untapped resource” that can help: women. Women are increasingly outperforming men in learning advanced skills, but are under-represented in the manufacturing workforce and in the specialized S.T.E.M. fields today, according to an article in the Huffington Post, titled “Manufacturing Skills Shortages and the Untapped Resource.” 

The article reports that women overall only represent 25 percent of the manufacturing workforce, but only 16 percent of executive officers. Both of these figures are well below the average for all U.S. businesses. One reason for this is that girls are still not evenly represented in the S.T.E.M. fields of education. Data from test results conclude that girls are persuaded to go in a different direction from S.T.E.M. fields.

I suggest that, as manufacturing professionals, we get the good word out that manufacturing and the S.T.E.M. fields provide solid, rewarding career paths for women as well as men. As the article states, it would do manufacturing a lot of good to have the diversity women would create in this workforce.

Read “Women, Manufacturing Needs Your Talents” for more insight on how to focus on the challenge of attracting women to our workforce. Another good read is “Increasing STEM Education for Women.”