Maintaining a fully staffed plastics business is easier said than done.  Plastics businesses tend to be large, monochromatic facilities that have a bit of a dreary vibe, meaning hiring and retaining workers will prove challenging for most businesses in this industry.  However, staffing the ranks is only one of the many common workforce challenges in the plastics industry.  Let’s take a look at some of the top hurdles facing business owners, managers and hiring managers in the plastics industry.

People are One of the Industry’s Top Challenges

Filling orders and meeting quotas is that much easier when you have the right personnel.  Though a plastics business can attempt to overcome this workforce challenge by hanging a “help wanted” sign, doing so will not result in solid candidates applying.  In short, there is a skills gap and a labor shortage that is best remedied with the assistance of a recruiter.

Opt for new candidates after vetting, interviewing, and testing are conducted by a recruiter; and you will rest easy knowing your business won’t be held back by the skills gap.  Keep in mind, DIY hiring has consistently proven to yield unengaged employees who are looking to make a quick buck rather than latch onto an employer for years or a full career.  Let a recruiter guide you to new hires, and you’ll find that the hiring process is easier and your employee retention booms.

The Skills Gap

The skills gap is chief among the workforce challenges in the plastics industry.  The skills gap is split into two distinct segments: leadership and operations.  Training programs certainly make it easier to overcome skills shortages; yet it also helps to innovate, provide positive reinforcement for goal attainment, and perform an honest assessment. It is helpful to develop an overarching strategy to bridge gaps in skills.

Plastics industry businesses should be especially mindful of the skills gap and its potential to undermine operations, simply because skilled boomers are aging out of the workforce.  The little-known truth is that 10,000 baby boomers reach retirement eligibility every single day, meaning the industry skill drain will continue for at least another half decade.  Prepare now and your business will be strategically positioned for the workforce demographic shift.

Recognize the fact that there is a skills drain in the plastics industry, make accommodations for millennials who will replace the aging boomers, and it will be that much easier to maintain a fully-staffed workforce.  In particular, millennials are looking for more control over their work schedule, a work-life balance, and work that engages them.  Provide these forms of positive reinforcement, and the skills gap workforce challenge of the plastics industry won’t compromise the bottom line.

Sweat the Small Stuff

Attracting hardworking candidates who are likely to stick with their new employer is that much easier when the company’s weaknesses become its strengths.  The subtleties of your business’s aesthetic are especially important.  Examples of subtleties to key in on include:

Recognize the fact that potential hires don’t want to clock into work at an outdated manufacturing building that looks like it is an institution.  Something as simple as adding a fresh coat of paint to the front door can alter potential hires’ perception of the business to the point that they give serious consideration to accepting a job offer.

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