90K and Counting

During iSuppli’s EMS webinar yesterday, an interesting data point was revealed: 90,000.

That’s the number of workers the EMS/ODM sector has laid off during the current recession. That’s an astounding figure (and assuredly does not include the reported 100,000 Hon Hai purportedly was letting go).

Even scarier than the number itself is the unmeasurable amount of experience and brain power that has been drained away, much of it likely for good. Talented engineers and technicians don’t stay on the sidelines long; they find other jobs — often in other industries.

When all is said and done, that may be a legacy we as an industry will be coming to grips with long after the order books have filled again.

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About Mike

Mike Buetow is president of the Printed Circuit Engineering Association (pcea.net). He previously was editor-in-chief of Circuits Assembly magazine, the leading publication for electronics manufacturing, and PCD&F, the leading publication for printed circuit design and fabrication. He spent 21 years as vice president and editorial director of UP Media Group, for which he oversaw all editorial and production aspects. He has more than 30 years' experience in the electronics industry, including six years at IPC, an electronics trade association, at which he was a technical projects manager and communications director. He has also held editorial positions at SMT Magazine, community newspapers and in book publishing. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois. Follow Mike on Twitter: @mikebuetow