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News hardware & software 24 September 2021, 13:46

author: Miriam Moszczynska

Electronics Prices May Not Drop After All - Factories Lack Workers

Chip factories are facing another problem. As one report shows, a shortage of properly trained workers may be starting.

Chip manufacturers are facing more and more difficulties. A recent report by IPC, the international organization for electronics manufacturers, shows that in addition to the huge demand for semiconductors, there is also a shortage of trained personnel. The survey conducted in Asia, Europe and North America shows that 80% of the manufacturers surveyed are having trouble finding employees.

Electronics Prices May Not Drop After All - Factories Lack Workers - picture #1
Difficulty in finding skilled workers, source: IPC

This is a very significant issue, because IDC's recent prediction of possible oversupply of semiconductors by 2023 is called into question. Also important is the aspect of prices of materials needed to produce chips. As many as 90% of manufacturers point to the rising costs of materials, which is due to, among others, the continuing pandemic, which significantly hampers transportation.

There is also the previously mentioned difficulty in finding employees, 89% of factories predicts that the employment problem will not disappear, but will become even more acute. Also in this case the pandemic is to blame, making it much more difficult for skilled workers to travel between countries. The solution is supposed to be to train current workers so that they can work in more demanding positions, but this will obviously increase the cost of hiring them.

Electronics Prices May Not Drop After All - Factories Lack Workers - picture #2
Direction of key business indicators, source: IPC

Looking at the above graphs, it is difficult to be optimistic about, for example, the issue of graphics cards, which continue to increase their price. In addition, if manufacturers of semiconductors will not be able to organize a trained workforce, then also plans for the creation of new factories become questionable. After all, if there is a shortage of workers in the new factories, then who will replace them? It probably won't be the machines, because they need someone to program them.

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