"Golden" professions: young people are the future of Made in Italy jewellery
The data processed by the Confindustria Moda Study Center for Federorafi demonstrated excellent results for the gold, silver, jewellery and coral and cameo manufacturing sectors: in November 2022, exports came close to 9 billion euros with an increase of +22, 1% over the same period of 2021 and +40.6% over the pre-covid period (2019). Based on these results, the turnover estimates at the end of 2022 foresee an achievement of 10.9 billion euros, a record figure for the sector.
In the first 11 months of 2022, the destination countries recorded positive results with a +13.9% for the USA, +20.9% from Switzerland and the UAE, while only Hong Kong fell with -0.5%.
However, the excellent performance data are at risk due to the inability of the more than 7,100 companies in the sector to meet market demands due to the impossibility of finding specialized manpower.
The crucial issue for the future of Made in Italy gold manufacturing was tackled in the presentation organized on Thursday March 9th in Milan by Confindustria Federorafi, with Italian Exhibition Group/Vicenzaoro and Skuola.net, to illustrate the "roadmap" of the sector on the subject of Orientation and Training.
Today the sector employs 30,619 people, of which 58% are women. Economic surveys on a sample of companies indicate the presence of a positive sentiment for the first half of 2023, both in terms of turnover and employment, as 36% of the companies interviewed believe they will increase the number of their employees.
Based on the previous data and the investments in further new production sites in Italy by all the main international jewelery brands, the forecasts in terms of employment are positive. In addition, over 50% of those employed in the sector will be of retirement age in less than 10 years, while only 13% of those employed are under the age of 30.
The theme of "recruitment" represents a more than relevant problem: goldsmith schools are relaunching themselves only in recent years. The mapping just done at national level by Confindustria Federorafi indicates that there are almost 40 institutes that have resumed training in the precious metals sector but graduate students are still insufficient compared to the demand from companies. The needs of new employees and employees for generational turnover in companies over the next 5 years can be estimated at a percentage that is close to 8/10% of the total current workforce (3000).
According to Claudia Piaserico, President of Confindustria Federorafi: "Institutions must give dignity and authority to the Technical Professional Institutes which continue to guarantee rates of entry into the world of work close to 100% but are not able to attract young people in sufficient numbers for a manufacturing country like Italy."
The aim of the effort, in terms of training and information of school principals, teachers and counselors, is to acquire useful elements and information to be transferred to students, thus enhancing the many opportunities in professional and salary terms that the sector can offer.
The initiatives carried out by Federorafi have seen a "mapping" of the schools/institutes with goldsmith courses, identifying almost 40 in 10 Regions. Furthermore, they defined the most sought-after professional profiles (editor's note: goldsmith, cashier, engraver, gemologist, cleaner, 3D printing expert, numerically controlled machine expert, designer, digital media specialist...) and organized the first day of Orientation during Vicenzaoro.
In collaboration with Vicenzaoro, Confindustria Federorafi has launched a partnership with Skuola.net to communicate with students using their own language and with their own metrics and with teachers and families so that they realize how interesting and performing the sector is for the personal growth and fulfillment of each boy.
According to Daniele Grassucci, Founder and Director of Skuola.net, there are many families who have lost faith in technical-practical trades, a situation aggravated by the orientation carried out in many middle schools, which indicate technical and professional institutes to less performing students from the academic point of view. However, still 1 in 3 secondary school students are interested in following this path.
Marco Carniello, Global Exhibition Director Jewellery & Fashion of Italian Exhibition Group, is a strategic partner of Confindustria Federorafi and Skuola.net for this structured and wide-ranging project: “Young people represent the future of jewellery. Our commitment to the development and internationalization of the sector, and in particular of the excellence of Made in Italy, is not expressed only through the business opportunities generated by our salons but also by promoting the culture of the sector and activating ourselves as an information platform, training and networking.”
"Your sector fascinates for many reasons and every promotional event and trade fair is essential to support the sector in its constant expansion" underlines the Minister of Enterprise and Made in Italy Adolfo Urso, recalling the excitement of the latest edition of Vicenzaoro last January which he inaugurated in attendance.