By Richard W. Lewis, CPA, CFE, Business Assurance & Advisory Services Partner | Manufacturing Industry Team
Your “talent” is your employees. A common theme heard from business executives across a multitude of industries is the constant challenge they face with hiring, training, and retaining qualified talent. Most companies believe that their employees are their most important asset and in doing so, are having to be creative and innovative in finding ways to ensure their “talent” can get the job done, whatever it is.
If recent trends and forecasts hold, the U.S. manufacturing sector should be entering a period of modest growth. U.S. production of manufactured goods increased 1.8% in February 2016 compared to the same month a year earlier. February's rise represented the third consecutive monthly gain in U.S. manufacturing output, which some economists are viewing as a sign that the sluggishness of the U.S. manufacturing sector may be easing, according to the Wall Street Journal. Looking into the future, revenue for the U.S. manufacturing sector is forecast to grow at an annual compounded rate of 4% between 2016 and 2020, based on changes in physical volume and unit prices, according to the Interindustry Economic Research Fund. If you factor in the possibility of U.S. manufacturers actually “onshoring” more production and jobs, there could be a “talent” shortage in the industry. To participate in the growth, U.S. manufacturers are going to have to rely on their employees and ensure that they are fostering an environment that promotes continuous learning and product development.
In Manufacturing Business Technology’s recent article, The Advantages of Collaborative Learning and Development for Manufacturers, covered this very subject. The author, Daisy Hernandez, provides several tips when considering how a manufacturing company can develop a culture of learning and development. One suggestion is the use of social collaboration technologies or platforms to more easily train employees, streamline processes, and harness knowledge. A second is to revamp the performance management process to be feedback-driven and occur on a continuous basis versus once or twice a year. Other great suggestions are shared on balancing product quality and efficiency.
Need advice on developing and retaining your manufacturing company's talent pool? Keiter can help. We can put you in touch with the resources you need to reach your business goals. 804.747.0000 | Email us.