The skilled welder shortage


The piping industry is facing a global skills shortage. The US has now joined the UK in order to find new ways to against this pressing danger to the industry. According to the American Welding Society, the US will face a shortage of 400,000 welders by 2024. The reasons are ageing population of current welders and absence of new welders with competent skill sets.


A cross-industry issue

Project leaders and human resources managers across industries raise their voices when it comes to the shortage of skilled welders.  “In the old days we didn’t have to advertise, we just told our welders we needed some more people, and they would ask a mate. Today, I’ll be lucky if I get anyone replying to an advert who can do the job.” Rosemary Robinson, Director of a mid-sized welding company in the UK. Despite efforts coming from the industry sector as well as government in many northern Europe countries and the United States, possible solutions to the problem may be slow.

What are the solutions?

There are alternatives to welding that require less trained workers and are more efficient. Especially for pipe dimensions of less than four inches, several ways of connecting pipes without welding are possible. Smaller dimensions can be connected using cutting rings. For bigger dimensions there is the flaring process for example. A system that can be used for small as well as larger pipe diameters in an efficient, safe and foremost mobile way used to be missing. This is now possible with fipeing, which may be a game changer in the pipe welding sector.

“With a shortage of 400’000 welders by 2024 there is room for innovative processes. “