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26 PCB007 MAGAZINE I APRIL 2022 While the conflict in Ukraine has captured headlines for the past several weeks, the chal- lenges facing companies on the workforce front have not abated. When I speak with exec- utives around the world, they are singing the same song in two-part harmony: supply chain and people. Let's talk a little about the people challenges that are keeping management up many nights. Even though we say there is a workforce prob- lem, it is not just one problem. is obstacle is multifaceted. Some of the Challenges Let's first examine the factory floor. ere are several facets to this challenge. First, there is the challenge of finding people, any people, who are willing to work in the industry. It is not that the electronics manufacturing indus- try isn't attractive; it is that, due to the down- Working Together to Address Workforce Challenges ward pressure on electronics, the operator roles don't tend to pay as much as the Ama- zon factory down the road. is kind of com- petition makes it very difficult to find people. Our industry is not the only industry looking for people; practically every industry is look- ing and trying to make deals to woo employ- ees into their locations. Some of these entice- ments, such as providing tuition toward a degree if you come to work for their factory, are things that have never been considered at this level of employment. e other challenge that has come about due to COVID-19 is that of the virtual workforce. During the pandemic, many of the operators were able to experience getting paid while not going to the factory. is presented a different way of life that had not been considered previ- ously. At the operator and inspector levels, this really isn't an option. It is almost impossible One World, One Industry Feature Column by Dr. John Mitchell, IPC PRESIDENT AND CEO

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