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January 18, 2021

Today’s Microelectronics Workforce – Enabling the Advancements of Tomorrow

The turn of the New Year means new opportunities for the microelectronic industry as SEMI continues to focus on a top priority for companies across the microelectronics design and manufacturing supply chain and SEMI members – supporting the development of the talent pipeline.

Regardless of a member company’s role within microelectronics, ensuring a continued, robust flow of qualified talent for what is a cross-cutting, foundational industry sector is of high strategic importance. Skilled workers are essential to advances in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI), smart manufacturing, medtech, transportation and communications. In order to satisfy the world’s insatiable appetite for technology, we need a qualified workforce that can design and manufacture cutting-edge microelectronic devices.

SEMI Works PQLaunched in 2019 by SEMI’s Government Programs Office, SEMI Works™ is a holistic approach to developing and maintaining the talent pipeline. 2020 focused on building the all-important infrastructure, engaging member companies to identify required skills and developing a Unified Competency Model to catalog these workforce requirements. SEMI Works™ accomplished several firsts for the microelectronics industry:

  • First dynamic, data informed workforce training standard adopted and published by the U.S. Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration (USDOL-ETA)
  • First SEMI Certified college program for technicians
  • First Industry Approved Apprenticeship Program for Technicians, adopted and endorsed by the U.S. Department of Labor

Member inputs anchor the SEMI Works™ portal, which enables connections among talent, employers and training/education providers. The portal’s initial phase of development is on track for completion in the first quarter of this year, marking the point when it will begin to be populated with specific job information, individual (talent) profiles and applicable training courses.

SEMI Works

Once SEMI Works™ is fully operational, it will be optimized to further support talent development and acquisition, providing a comprehensive platform for learning management, e-learning and career advancement. Throughout 2021 SEMI will be engaging members, training providers and job seekers to ensure the portal’s capabilities and user interface meets their needs. We’ll also move forward with several other SEMI Work’s programs including the Curated Content Initiative, which will enable SEMI members to identify non-proprietary courses, a SEMI member job board and an interactive career map to help job seekers plan their future in the industry.

The microelectronics industry will only fulfill its tremendous promise for innovation and growth with the right talent. SEMI looks forward to working with members in 2021 to expand SEMI Works™ and help lay the groundwork for the next wave of technology advances.

Mike Russo is vice president of Industry Advancement and Government Programs at SEMI.