MRO Magazine

Minnesota Manufacturers Expect to Grow, Create Jobs and Increase Wages

May 13, 2015
By Business Wire News


Minnesota’s manufacturers overwhelmingly expect to parlay recent success and a sturdy economy into solid business growth in 2015, according to The State of Manufacturing® survey. The survey revealed that manufacturers expect to expand, yet they also expressed concern about the looming shortage of skilled employees (especially fueled by retirements), the costs of health care, and government policies.

The survey is produced by Enterprise Minnesota ( and is the most comprehensive survey of Minnesota’s manufacturers.

A whopping 89 percent of manufacturing executives say they are confident about the future of their firms, which is the highest recorded mark in the survey’s seven-year history and a five point increase over the 2014 mark.

The cost of providing health insurance to employees again tops of the list of manufacturers’ concerns (56 percent), down 15 points from its high of 71 percent in 2011 following the passage of the Affordable Care Act.

Minnesota’s business climate was again ranked by manufacturers as the biggest potential impediment to growth at 43 percent, though this number is down five points from 2014.

“Minnesota’s manufacturers are undoubtedly bullish about their prospects for 2015,” said Enterprise Minnesota president and CEO Bob Kill. “The chronic shortage of qualified workers, however, has manufacturers increasingly concerned that they will not be able to take full advantage of the improving economy.”

The results of the survey will be presented at a series of briefings throughout Minnesota from May 13 to September 10 in Minneapolis, Mankato, Eagan, Duluth, Moorhead, Brainerd, St. Cloud, Alexandria, Willmar, Albert Lea, Owatonna, Elk River, Red Wing, Winona, Hibbing, Rochester, and Litchfield. Click here to register for State of Manufacturing events.

Pollster Rob Autry of Charleston, SC.-based Meeting Street Research, conducted phone interviews with 400 manufacturing executives, representing a geographically proportional cross-section of Minnesota between February 23 and March 18. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.9 percent. The research was complemented by 12 focus groups of manufacturing executives from around the state.

Full survey top-line results and cross tabulations are available at

Statewide sponsors for The State of Manufacturing include: Baker Tilly; BMO Harris Bank; Granite Equity Partners; Gray Plant Mooty; Marsh & McLennan Agency; Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED); MRA; and Risdall Marketing Group.

Meeting Street Research is a leading national survey research company. Rob Autry has conducted all seven of The State of Manufacturing surveys.

About Enterprise Minnesota
Enterprise Minnesota is a consulting organization that works with medium-size and smaller manufacturing companies to help them compete and grow profitably. It is also one of 60 Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST/MEP) affiliates associated through the US Department of Commerce to bring world-class services to its manufacturing clients.

Enterprise Minnesota
Lynn Shelton, 612-455-4215
Director, Marketing & Communications
Chris Morse, 612-455-4213
Public Relations Manager