A Car or a Faster Horse

If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse.”
– Henry Ford

October is National Manufacturing Month; a month dedicated to recognizing the value of manufacturers and the importance they serve to our economic prosperity and independence through innovation.

October is National Manufacturing Month – we’re celebrating by highlighting this dynamic and evolving industry and inspiring the next generation of manufacturers. Talent, technology, infrastructure and investment are four key factors that drive to build the next generation of skilled talent. Investments in training and job creation is critical for Florida and the United States to remain competitive in a global marketplace.

There’s a reason there is an entire month dedicated to manufacturing; the opportunities are endless. Central Florida continues to lead the state with the highest annual job growth in manufacturing, however, there’s still a skills gap to bridge in order to meet business needs.

To close that gap, we believe strongly in promoting and supporting manufacturing, that we’re seen as a true resource to our business, education and training partners – as well as career seekers. Our evaluation of the company scorecard gives us an edge to being agile, adaptive and innovative to be THE workforce resource to the community.

But we can’t do it alone – CSCF works diligently to foster and deepen relationships with community partners so that we’re able to quickly adapt and help create programs and learning opportunities to train ready and skilled workers of the future.

Fostering relationships. Every day, our CareerSourcers walk the walk right alongside career seekers and their journeys. And some of our Osceola team recently walked in their shoes on a recent tour of Valencia’s Advanced Manufacturing Center. Mike Kepner, Director of Advanced Manufacturing Programs, shared valuable insights about the Manufacturing industry and some great information and specifics about training students in their programs. This knowledge will be brought right back to the centers and applied to help customers on their career paths.

And in Seminole, some of the center staff recently went on a tour of the American Builders Supply Company (ABS). ABS’s staffing coordinator, Joe Misiti, has embraced the work we do participating in numerous meet-ups and meetings at the Seminole office. The staff had an opportunity to see first-hand how the work is done at the local level, including assembly of doors, the distribution facility and team work assignment. It was a highly interactive tour regarding the operations, safety, retention and benefits of being an employee for American Builders. And additionally, it was great to see several women working in the field as well to help break stereotypes.

In keeping with the spirit of forward-thinking and ahead-of-its-time innovation, earlier this month, a manufacturing and construction forum was held in Tavares. Speakers from Lake County colleges, FDOT, iBuild Central Florida and several other organizations led a discussion about skilled worker training, career opportunities and their impact to our region.

CSCF participated too at Elevate Lake’s Manufacturing & Construction Forum – held earlier this week. Pam Nabors, our president & CEO, was a guest speaker to showcase how establishing apprenticeships are a proven solution for manufacturing businesses to recruit, train and retain highly skilled workers. In particular, Pam highlighted that 97% of employers recommend apprenticeships as a training model since it provides the opportunity to custom train a ready workforce.


Apprenticeships have been around so long because they work. They are a tried-and-true model to educate individuals about pursuing careers within manufacturing. They also help businesses reduce turnover, improve productivity, create flexible training options and develop a highly skilled workforce that helps grow their business. We’ve seen this success from several of our apprenticeships with the Joint Apprenticeship Training Council, roofing contractors association and iBuild.

We’re excited and we hope you are too. Now more than ever is the perfect time to celebrate and raise awareness of the economic benefits by becoming more involved in this industry. Whether it’s through attending some upcoming job fairs, shadowing an area apprenticeship program, attending a class or program at one of our training providers or getting your company more involved – we’re happy to help connect you to an area of interest.