The modern manufacturing workforce is going beyond constantly driving higher levels of productivity through continuous improvement. It is augmenting that legacy by being the pivotal resource in creating strategic advantage. Complexity is a given in global supply chains, and both information and the people with the skills to use that information provide an advantage. Managing corporate capabilities through the workforce is a competitive necessity.
IDC Manufacturing Insights conducted research across 11 countries, both mature and emerging, to collect information about attitudes toward the manufacturing industry and the state of the industry's workforce. We supplemented this survey-based data collection with detailed, open-ended discussions with executives from global manufacturing firms that must manage the workforce in all parts of the world. This document contains the results of our research as well as our analysis and recommendations.