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Engineers Find New Hope for Jobs in Michigan

Detroit Free Press (04/02/12) Katherine Yung; John Gallagher

The demand for technical professionals and engineers in Michigan has increased, but a shortage of highly skilled workers is threatening to stall newfound growth for business and the state economy, even as millions across the country are looking for work. Attracting professionals back to Michigan is one of the strategies companies and the state now pursue to fill open positions. The Michigan Economic Development Corp. has formed teams for five areas: manufacturing; health care; alternative energy and utilities; information technology and media; and agriculture.

In manufacturing alone, U.S. employers have not been able to fill 600,000 skilled positions, according to a late summer survey of the manufacturing industry from Deloitte and the Manufacturing Institute. The situation is putting upward pressure on salaries for many technical workers. For engineers, “the pay levels are beginning to increase across the board in all states, including Michigan,” says Todd Soulier, talent acquisition manager for EASi, a Detroit-based engineering staffing firm.