While economists and politicians are on tenterhooks fretting about a possible recession this year, it is becoming more apparent that manufacturing has already suffered a mild recession last year as a result of the country’s protracted trade disputes. Fortunately, President Trump recently signed a preliminary trade deal with China, while over at the Senate, leaders approved an overhaul of NAFTA. Both developments should soothe uncertainty among business leaders. However, a lot of damage has already been done to regional economies that depend on the industrial sector and farming, and fears abound that business may never return to normal.
After failing in his bid to become Taiwan's next president, billionaire Foxconn founder Terry Gou is re-committing to a long-delayed electronics plant in Wisconsin. The manufacturing facility has been a target of controversy due to the massive incentives it extracted from the state in 2017. It was originally intended to produce liquid crystal displays for TVs, but the company reduced the size and scope of its commitments and badly missed its maximum first-year hiring target by a whopping 82%. Now, it appears Mr. Gou is ready to get the plant up and running as he's stated that he plans to spend more time in the U.S. this year.
A LinkedIn survey of 2,406 U.S. hiring managers conducted last autumn has some fascinating insights about the hiring landscape. 72% of talent professionals plan to focus on recruiting millennials (ages 24-39) over the next five years as opposed to workers from other age groups. However, companies are most seeking to retain their Gen X workforce. 63% of talent professionals aim to keep employees aged 40-55 as they’re needed to step into senior roles roles abandoned by retiring Boomers. The study also reveals that employees stay an average of 10% longer at companies that hire internally, which could explain why internal hiring has increased 15% since 2015.
A new study out from the OECD has found that today’s teenagers, more or less, aspire to the same ten careers. Twenty years ago, boys ranked business manager as their number one career choice and girls selected teacher. In the latest report, teen boys chose engineer at their number one pick, followed by business manager and doctor. And today’s teen girls are gravitating most to careers as doctors, followed by teachers and business managers. Lawyers, police officers, and architects also appear on the lists of both today's boys and girls. Luckily, most of the top jobs teens want aren’t vulnerable to automation, but several are not very accessible due to education and qualification requirements.
NASA’s newest Mars rover is set to launch for the Red Planet this year, but before it can blast off to perform its scholarly duties, it still needs to be named. The space agency gave U.S. K-12 school children the opportunity to submit essays suggesting an official moniker for the craft, and has narrowed down the 28,000 submissions to nine candidates. Now, you reading this have the chance to vote and select the winner so long as you make your choice by the end of polling in three days time. Head over to the NASA website to check out the children’s essays and cast your vote.
A bi-weekly roundup of the latest happenings in industrial tech, hiring and the future of work.