Tackling people challenges in the manufacturing sector using analytics

Right now, 85% of manufacturing and engineering businesses are experiencing skill shortages and more and more businesses are realising that people analytics can help address them 

Here’s how people analytics can provide solutions for some of the skills challenges in manufacturing. 

Finding the right skills  

Skill shortages are a major issue as positions from entry level to senior remain vacant. Most pressing are the skills to use new, emergent technology, including the ability to program machines on plant floors as automation becomes more common 

Technicians skilled in robotics, programming and advanced technology make up the biggest skills gap in manufacturing. With older generations exiting the workforce, the ones who remain need to adapt to learn skills such as dealing with complex electronic malfunctions and programming automated systems.  

Adopting a digital solution in the form of people analytics can help identify the skills gaps that most urgently need addressing and allow you to make decisions based on demonstrable facts.  

People analytics uses real time data on metrics including turnover rates, the skills available in the business, career progression and employee engagement to help manage your talent pipeline.  

Improving equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) to attract skilled workers 

Businesses are increasingly expected to nurture workplace environments that are free from discrimination and to promote equal opportunities. This relates directly to skills attraction as 64% of millennials don’t want to work for a company that doesn’t prioritise challenging social issues. That’s 35% of the global workforce . With 73 million millennials considering manufacturing as a career worldwide, 67% of manufacturing companies have an EDI policy in place or are planning to get one.  

With an HR analytics platform, you won’t have to conduct a survey for an update on diversity data and progress, instead, you can simply get that information at a moment’s notice. Demonstrating that your organisation is actively seeking to develop a more inclusive culture offers a greater opportunity to draw skilled workers looking for the right place to develop their career.  

 Measure the value of training  

Whether it’s health and safety or compliance, knowing the rules is key for employees to protect themselves and the company. But the bigger your organisation, the harder it is to make sure everyone is on the same page. While any training system can detail attendance and identify training gaps, people analytics is a different story.  

People analytics links operational data to assess training investments and their impact on business outcomes. For example, a lack of cross-functional expertise with overlapping skills is one of the reasons the skill shortage in manufacturing is so prevalent. People analytics can identify employees with cross-functional skills and allow you to highlight training gaps and upskill your people.  

 Generate accurate employee data 

From supply chains to logistics, the manufacturing industry is already heavily automated. The World Economic Forum has predicted that by the end of this year, 42% of time spent on manufacturing will be automated. When we think of automation, many of us see lines of robotic tools across a factory floor.  

But if you’ve embraced automation, maybe the next step is embrace it a little further by now automating your people data  

Picking rates, time and motion software and warehouse management systems all generate large scale data. So why not have the same abundance of data with your employees? Training gaps, skill overlap, people retention, recruitment processes and team productivity can all be tracked and enhanced in the same ways other elements of your operations – driving efficiencies and lowering costs by as much as 10%. 

First Steps 

The people challenges facing the manufacturing industry will only persist without the embracing of a data-backed approach to tackling issues head on. 

Getting the right people information from the right sources into the hands of the right people at the right time is not just the best way to combat these challenges, it’s becoming the only way.  

Discover the solutions people analytics can provide for yourself with illumin8HR by booking a demo here. 

Related Blog Posts