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MFG Works Summit 2024

Early bird pricing of $50 if you register now through May 8th!

A strong workforce is essential for the success of manufacturing as it forms the backbone of the industry. A skilled and dedicated workforce ensures that production processes run smoothly, leading to increased efficiency and productivity. According to data from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry, in 2019, there were over 70,000 job openings in the manufacturing industry, but only about 30,000 job seekers. This significant shortage of workers has resulted in increased competition for available talent and has led many manufacturers to struggle to find and retain the skilled workers they need.

For these reasons, Catalyst Connection along with other regional stakeholders has developed the MFG Works Summit to elevate promising practices and resources for attendees with workforce responsibilities.

We invite regional manufacturers, educators, and partners to join us in this highly engaged program to understand these challenges and much more. Together, we can nurture a stronger manufacturing industry that is founded in a strong workforce.


Keynote Speaker: Chris Czarnik, Author, Coach and Trainer

Chris Czarnik (Zarr-Nick) has spent the last 20 years figuring out why people go to and leave organizations. As one of the most accomplished career coaches in the country, he has helped thousands of job seekers figure out how to identify organizations and jobs that are a great fit for them. As one CEO said, “If you are fishing for talent…he just spent the last 17 years with the fish!”

His book “Winning the War for Talent” is used by more than 3,500 organizations across the country and Chris travels more than 200 days a year teaching individual companies to recruit, retain and develop great employees.

He is an avid basketball and tennis player and is drawn to anything that is daring, exciting, or challenging. His love of teaching process-based solutions is known to more than 1,500 CEOs across the country.

His greatest joy however is knowing that when he helps companies find great employees, he is also helping his job seekers find work that is meaningful and fits their natural skills and abilities. When this happens, everybody goes home a winner!


  • 7:45 – 8:30am  Doors Open
  • 8:30 – 9:00am  Opening Remarks
  • 9:00 – 9:30am  Breakout 1 – Stream of Talent
  • 9:30 – 10:00am  Plenary 1 – Flex Forward: A Panel Discussion on Work Schedules, Benefits and Policies
  • 10:00 – 10:15am  Break/Networking
  • 10:15 – 10:30am  Plenary 2 – Harnessing the Job Quality Toolkit
  • 10:35 – 10:50am  Plenary 3 – Super Data Analytics Research
  • 10:50 – 11:50am  Breakout 2 – Incumbent Training/Retention
  • 12:00 – 12:45pm  Lunch
  • 12:45 – 2:30pm  Keynote Address: Winning the War on Talent with Chris Czarnik
  • 2:30 – 2:45pm  Break/Networking
  • 2:45 – 3:30pm  Breakout 3 – Stream of Talent – K12
  • 3:30 – 3:45pm  Closing Remarks

Click here to view the schedule in more detail.


May 22
8:30 am - 4:00 pm
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DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh – Cranberry
910 Sheraton Drive
Mars, PA 16046 United States
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