New figures from Manufacturing Excellence (MX) and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (ImechE) suggets that British industry may be closing its oft-lamented skills gap.
The number of those who are adequately trained to perform multi-skilled tasks now exceeds the average number of manufacturing employees required to be multi-skilled, the research shows.
This year, the skills gap measured at -1.1 per cent, with 65.8 per cent of the workforce employed to be multi-skilled, while 66.9 per cent of the workforce is trained to be multi-skilled.
These figures mark a shift from three years ago, when the skills gap in manufacturing stood at 11.5 per cent.
According to the data, some of the biggest improvements came in computing, with over 90 per cent of workers in manufacturing stating they need and were trained in essential computing skills in order to fulfil their job requirements.
But with the manufacturing sector struggling with largest drop in staffing levels for two years in April, the question many in manufacturing will be asking is whether they will have jobs at all in six months time.