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August 23, 2005
Manufacturers Offer More to Attract Skilled Workers

Manufacturers are finding it more difficult to find skilled workers to fill key positions and some are offering higher starting wages in response, according to a monthly report by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations.

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The two organizations collaborate to issue the Leading Indicator of National Employment (LINE), a monthly report on trends in the national job market.

The report includes a recruiting-difficulty index, which tracks efforts by manufacturers to recruit highly qualified individuals to fill the positions most critical to a firm's success. The index is at its highest level in the 19 months since the two organizations began recording data.

Meanwhile, compensation offered to new hires rose from July to August even though overall manufacturing employment declined during that period, according to the report.

The researchers say that currently there is no indication of wide spread wage inflation, but if the job market for skilled workers continues to tighten, there will be greater pressures on manufacturers to increase new-hire compensation.

For the monthly report, SHRM and Rutgers survey human resource professionals at manufacturing firms.

Read more about compensation in the Salary Center.

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