U.S. semiconductor industry short 67,000 professionals

July 26, 2023

Industry association SIA warns today of significant talent shortage by 2030

The U.S. semiconductor industry is facing a significant shortage of skilled workers. According to the Semiconductor Industry Association (https://www.semiconductors.org/) (SIA), while chipmakers in the country are on track to add a total of 115,000 new jobs in the field by 2030, the industry is already facing a significant shortage of skilled workers. However, based on a study conducted by Oxford Economics (https://www.oxfordeconomics.com/) on behalf of the association, 58 percent of those jobs may not be filled due to a lack of skills – would be 67,000 missing workers.

“Critical, highly skilled roles”
“Semiconductor workers are the driving force behind growth and innovation in the chip industry and the overall U.S. economy,” said Matt Johnson, SIA board chairman and CEO of Silicon Labs (https://www.silabs.com/). Still, he said, this industry in particular must cope with a severe shortage of skilled technicians, computer scientists and engineers. “Only effective collaboration between government and business can bridge this talent shortage and realize the full potential of innovation in our industry,” Johnson says.
“Our analysis makes it clear that there are many critical, high-skilled roles across the semiconductor sector and that a shortage is coming to the industry if proactive measures are not taken to develop appropriate talent,” says Dan Martin, study director and senior economist at Oxford Economics. With the so-called “CHIPS Act” in 2022, the U.S. government has at least taken a step to ensure the long-term global competitiveness of the U.S. semiconductor industry, he said. “In the future, however, tens of thousands of workers will have to fill the roles the industry has created to expand its manufacturing capacity in the U.S.,” Martin said.

58 percent of jobs unfilled
According to the study, the U.S. semiconductor industry workforce will grow by as many as 115,000 new jobs by 2030 – an increase in jobs from about 345,000 currently to 460,000 by the end of the decade. However, taking into account the current level of qualifications among trainees in this sector, it appears that 58 percent of these positions will not be filled by then due to a lack of qualifications. Of these projected 67,000 shortfalls, 39 percent (about 26,400 positions) involve jobs as technicians, 41 percent (27,300 positions) involve jobs as engineers, and 20 percent (13,400 positions) involve computer scientist roles.

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