WIN Initiatives

Composites Workforce – Custom Employer Needs Survey

Project Type
Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI)
Project Date
Main Contact
Melissa Sheldon

Contact Melissa

WIN began working with the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI) during the winter of 2015. The partnership grew out of WIN’s work with LIFT, the lightweight metals institute, one of IACMI’s partners and fellow National Network for Manufacturing Institutes (NNMI) member. IACMI’s goals focus on growing and facilitating technology transfer activity related to composites applications in manufacturing and energy. The institute has aligned their workforce and education goals to ensure that a qualified workforce is available when companies adopt new composites materials and technologies.

IACMI employed WIN to classify key occupations in the composites manufacturing and research space and perform analysis to identify opportunities for workforce investments that would further their mission. Using data and analytics aligns with WIN’s goals of data informed workforce investments. During the second phase of WIN’s work with IACMI the team created an employer survey to be sent to members of IACMI and IAMCI partner the American Composites Manufacturing Consortium (ACMA). The survey requested data on current and future employment needs and hiring gaps in for composites workers.

Organizations Involved

Highlight Findings Include:
The greatest current talent needs for composites companies and partners:
  1. Engineering technicians/technologists
  2. Chemical and materials scientists
  3. Computer, electrical, and mechanical engineers
  4. Researchers Floor supervisors
Important hiring gaps for respondents:
  1. Lack of multidisciplinary training, narrow background
  2. Composites knowledge and experience/practical application of composites
  3. Manufacturing skills, skilled trades cross-bread with engineering and computer technology
  4. Hands-on experienceBasic employability skills
  5. Communications skills
  6. Work experience