Manufacturers Can’t Find Workers. Where’d They Go?

Contributed by Ethan Karp to Forbes

Manufacturers are not alone in wondering what has happened to the shrinking base of American workers over the last two years. Have they all taken off for retirement in Aruba? Decided their spouse’s income will suffice? Opted for the 1099 life? Fallen into a blackhole?

Theories have been easy to come by—data, less so. Which is why I was so enthusiastic about my friend Bethia Burke’s project. President at the nonprofit Fund for Our Economic Future, her team recently set out to understand why 4 million people are quitting their jobs every month.

From the survey of 5,000 working-age Ohioans, there is much manufacturers can learn to get a leg up in the uber-competitive fight for talent.

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