‘Year of Women in Manufacturing’
What It Means and Why It Matters
According to research conducted by academics from the Universities of Glasgow and Leicester, companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 25% more likely to have
above-average profitability than companies in the bottom. Companies with more than 30% female executives were more likely to outperform companies that didn’t. Diverse thinking and unique perspectives are key to running and maintaining a profitable business. The lack of women in the industry is holding manufacturers back from reaching their full potential. When women aren’t being encouraged or feel as though they wouldn’t fit in at a manufacturing operation, this severely limits an employer’s ability to fill critical open roles. The skills gap will always remain if an influx of all kinds of new hires don’t enter the industry.
NJMEP and its partners are working together to highlight influential women manufacturing leaders that continue to drive ‘MADE in New Jersey’ manufacturing forward. Women are a largely underrepresented demographic in the manufacturing industry. Only about 30% of the 15.8 million people employed in manufacturing industries are women. Even less, 1 in 4 women hold leadership positions according to the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST). 1 This creates countless issues for the industry. Challenges range from workforce shortages to a lack of diverse perspectives in decision-making. The ‘Year of Women in Manufacturing’ is an initiative to highlight those New Jersey women leaders, and provides them and their communities a foundation to be heard, recognized, and a chance to encourage the next generation of women manufacturing professionals.
The Industry Steps Forward
To address misconceptions, provide platforms for leaders to engage and collaborate, and highlight the challenge the industry continues to face, the NJMEP team made it their mission to come together and
drive progress forward under the ‘Year of Women in Manufacturing’ initiative. This concentrated effort is a culmination of a variety of opportunities. There are countless ways to get involved. From interviews and articles to participating in NJBIA’s Women Business Leadership Forum as a panelist for the Women Business Leaders Forum event. The goal remains the same. NJMEP wants to show students and young adults that incredible career paths are waiting for them in the manufacturing space.