Date of Conferral



Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)


Business Administration


James F. Savard


Between 2000 and 2011, the United States suffered the loss of manufacturing jobs 6 times faster than the rate in the 20 years prior. North Carolina ranked first in manufacturing employment in 1992; however, in 2012 it ranked fourth. The loss of manufacturing jobs created a trend away from manufacturing industries to services industries. The purpose of this study was to explore strategies that nonmanufacturing managers use to facilitate the transferable skills of displaced manufacturing workers to nonmanufacturing industries. To address the problem, a purposeful sample of 3 nonmanufacturing managers in service industries was obtained from a major manufacturing city in North Carolina. The human capital theory was used as a conceptual framework. Data for this case study were collected from face-to-face, semistructured interviews and review of company documents. Data were coded and analyzed using a qualitative analysis software to identify recurring themes. The 4 prominent themes that emerged were: (a) characteristics that displaced manufacturing workers possessed for employment in service industries, (b) workers' willingness to obtain training and education, (c) managers' specific strategies, skills, and experience for hiring displaced manufacturing workers, and (d) workers' transferable skills. The findings from this study could contribute to social change by defining strategies nonmanufacturing leaders could use to identify and transfer skills from displaced manufacturing workers to nonmanufacturing labor sectors, thereby introducing transferable skills for diverse labor sectors for increasing employment and increasing the standards of living for employees and families.

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