Report: Manufacturers in southcentral PA struggling to fill jobs

Cris Collingwood//October 28, 2022

Report: Manufacturers in southcentral PA struggling to fill jobs

Cris Collingwood//October 28, 2022

Photo: Getty Images

Manufacturers in Southcentral Pennsylvania are still looking for workers to meet consumer demand and replace retiring employees. 

 The 20th edition of the Manufacturers’ Association’s Annual Manufacturing Wage & Salary 2022 report shows the continued demand for both skilled and hourly positions. 

  Reflecting the national labor market tightness, the report’s results show that manufacturers expect to continue to increase employment significantly as it had in 2021 with over 880 new hires over the next 12 months, which is historically high for the survey.  

Manufacturing in Southcentral Pennsylvania contributes $14 billion annually to the regional economy and is the second largest employment sector with 118,000 employees, the York-based Manufactures’ Association said.  

Wage and Salary Report found: 

  • Virtually all participating manufacturers in the survey, 90%, are having difficulty in hiring, with hourly workers and skilled hourly workers at the top of the list.
  • Of the participating employers, 64% of manufacturers reported that they will be hiring over the next 12 months, with no companies reporting plans to reduce their workforce. 
  • Turnover rates for hourly workers increased 25% from 2021 demonstrating the fluid job marketing for hourly workers. In a new result, salaried exempt employment turnover dramatically increased 2.5 times from 2021 as the hot job market created new opportunities for this classification.
  • The manufacturing workforce is aging faster with 20% of the companies reporting that a third or more of their workforce could retire in the next five years. 
  • To address hiring challenges, 87% of manufacturers said they have changed recruiting practices since last year, an 18% increase in that response from 2021. 
  • Entry level wages have increased significantly since pre-pandemic surveys (2019). The 2022 survey increased significantly again with an 8% increase over the 2021 entry level wage.

 This survey is meant to serve as a benchmarking tool for manufacturing human resources and management companies and includes data for direct labor and salary positions, the association said.  

This data collected from manufacturers across the region allows companies to determine where they stand relative to the marketplace in terms of wage and salary compensation as well as gauging the competitiveness of their compensation.  

The survey was conducted during the summer and early fall with nearly 100 employers. The wage and salary information compiled by the Manufacturers’ Association includes data on wages, salaries, labor market conditions, compensation practices and more.