In a column for MachineDesign.com, Carlos Gonzalez argues that efforts to fix manufacturing’s skills gap are too shortsighted:
Although the skilled labor gap is a pressing problem, it is also a short-term problem. The Internet of Things, mobile devices, and robotics are set to take over the industrial world. Many of the day-to-day skilled labor jobs will be performed by smart machines. The impending long-term problem is the skills gap of the future. This is a shortage we are currently creating by developing advanced systems and technology but not future workers on how to operate them. The machines of the future will require not just the practical knowledge of design, but also the knowledge of machine programming. For example, we need mechanical engineers that understand electrical engineering and vice versa. The skilled labor of the future is not just the physical application, but how that will interface with the computer-connected world brought to you by the IoT.