Manufacturing is an essential component of gross domestic product, which was $2.33 trillion in 2018, and drove 11.3% of U.S. economic output, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Manufactured goods comprise half of U.S. exports and add a lot of value to the power of the U.S. economy. Every dollar spent in manufacturing adds $2.74 to the economy, including retailing, transportation, and business services.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the United States has 12.69 million manufacturing jobs, which employ 7.9% of the workforce as of 2018. Yet, 89% of manufacturers are leaving jobs unfilled because they can't find qualified applicants, according to a 2018 Deloitte report. The skills gap could leave 2.4 million jobs vacant between 2018 and 2028. That could cost the industry $454 billion in 2028.
The manufacturing industry is working hard to create new jobs based on the 4.0 Revolution by creating new career pathways for the workforce to evolve along with the advanced technology.
Emerging technology breakthroughs in fields such as artificial intelligence (AI), advanced robotics, Internet of Things (IoT), autonomous vehicles, 3-D printing, nanotechnology, biotechnology, materials science, energy storage, and quantum computing are augmenting the possibilities every day. High-skill manufacturing employment, an area in which the United States has a competitive edge, has been expanding. That growth in the US has led to a significant skill upgrading of the manufacturing workforce throughout the country.