News & Insights

We’re changing the narrative of the manufacturing industry one story at a time. CMTA’s award-winning storytelling team showcases California’s 30,000 manufacturers by uplifting the voices of our makers. Find industry news and the stories from those “Making California” below. 

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Press Release

‘This could really impact the manufacturing sector right here in California’: Study Says Manufacturing in U.S. Could Need Up to 3.8 Million Workers

May 3, 2024

Sacramento, Calif. – As many as 3.8 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled in the next decade as the industry continues to advance post-pandemic, according to a new study by Deloitte and the Manufacturing Institute.

California Manufacturers and Technology Association’s (CMTA) CEO & President Lance Hastings joined KCRA 3 News on Thursday, May 2, 2024, to give insight into what this means for California’s manufacturing workforce and the solutions to fill the workforce gaps.

“This could really impact the manufacturing sector right here in California,” Hastings told KCRA 3 Anchor Brandi Cummings.

Watch the interview with KCRA 3 News Brandi Cummings in the video player above.

The new study found the “manufacturing industry has emerged from the pandemic on a solid growth trajectory, and continued growth is expected over the next 10 years as companies work to meet evolving customer demands, de-risk their supply chains, and leverage government incentives and policies.”

Hastings says the challenges to filling these jobs come from a convergence of variables. What Hastings calls the ‘Silver Tsunami’ with a wave of retirements is one reason for the need to backfill jobs while simultaneously seeing positions opening due to an increased growth in the sector. The manufacturing industry is thriving post-pandemic as significant investment drives it forward into more advanced manufacturing. These investments are being seen at the federal level with the Biden Administration’s CHIPS Act and at local state and municipal levels with tax credits and other investments across the country.

“The manufacturing jobs are highly skilled and technical, a lot of computers are involved. So, the skill gap that we have right now versus the previous manufacturing of heavy lifting, more active kind of jobs is different – it’s evolving, and we have to adapt,” Hastings said about moving forward with new types of manufacturing positions opening in the field.

CMTA aims to help aid in the industry’s growth by shaping and changing the narrative: “It’s not dirty, dark and dangerous like it used to be,” Hastings said. “Trying to attract people into this sector even with our great paying jobs, we’re finding to be difficult… In particular in California, we’re so innovative, and technologically focused. California’s jobs profile is a bit different than other states.”

The study finds that the demand for digital skills is accelerating as technological innovation continues.

“Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute’s analysis show that, in the last five years, there has been a 75% increase in demand for simulation and simulation software skills, sought mostly for technology-enabled production or testing roles,” the study states. These roles include semiconductor processing technicians, machinists, first-line supervisors, welders, and electronics and electromechanical assemblers.

The solution? Start educating the next generation early, Hastings says.

“It starts in elementary school, it starts in high school when you start to tell everyone about what career opportunities are [out there], that may or may not require a college degree. That’s where we can really start to make a change,” he said.

CMTA is working directly with California’s top leaders, including Gov. Gavin Newsom, “on ways to infuse activity and capital into the manufacturing sector.”

Watch the interview with FOX40’s Sonseeahray Tonsall in the video player above.


About CMTA

The California Manufacturers & Technology Association has advocated for pro-growth laws and regulations before the California legislature and administrative agencies since 1918. The total output from manufacturing in California is $300 billion per year, roughly 10 percent of the total economic output of the state. Manufacturers employ 1.3 million Californians paying wages more than $25,000 higher than other non-farm employers in the state. For more information, visit CMTA’s website.

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