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View Diary: The secret of the so-called "skills gap" (191 comments)

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  •  Companies that offshore (3+ / 0-)

    find that pretty typically they have to provide transportation and even housing for workers, and their own power, communications, and security infrastructure.

    Interestingly, commuter transport is reasonably common among companies with skilled workers. Keeps them from having to drive in heavy traffic.

    Fry, don't be a hero! It's not covered by our health plan!

    by elfling on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 07:57:11 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah, my company (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      which actually seems to win awards for social responsibility in spite of being multinational manufacturing company...

      Has built roads, flood prevention stuff, added power infrastructure and even in one place built a hospital to service the workers.

      We tend to build near major population centers and then develop our workers.  The typical employee is long service, even in the factories.  Our products have very high quality requirements, so we need skilled workers, and we pay for the privilege in a variety of ways.

      Because transport is so cheap, it is still less expensive to do things this way than to manufacture in the USA.  Higher gas prices have encouraged us to move final assembly and customization closer to the end customer though, and efforts are ongoing in Brazil, Eurozone, and, yes, USA to ship and warehouse standardized products that can be customized at the last second with firmware changes and package assembly for different customers and markets.

      What will bring manufacturing closer to the customers will be more expensive transport.  In the heyday of the bakeries in USA (eg, Hostess before they got bought by bankers) you had bakeries scattered geographically so no product had to be shipped very far (ensuring it stayed fresh longer).   In that case the cost of long distance transport was spoilage, rather than simple freight costs, but the same mechanism may come into play as petrofuels get more and more expensive.

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