Manufacturers Report Significant IRC Economic Impact

Manufacturers Report Significant IRC Economic Impact on Jobs, Sales Growth, Cost Savings, & Investments in Innovation

For Immediate Release
January 22, 2024

Allentown, PA – January 22, 2024 — The Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC), one of Pennsylvania’s seven Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs), announces impressive outcomes revealed by a third-party survey of 575 small and mid-sized manufacturing firms across the Commonwealth. The survey, conducted throughout 2023, underscores the major influence of the statewide IRC Network, the PA flagship program dedicated to fortifying the competitiveness and resilience of Pennsylvania’s small and mid-size manufacturing firms.

Key Highlights:

  • Workforce Expansion: In concert with IRC professional services, manufacturers averted 7,197 layoffs and added 1,462 full-time workers to their teams over the past 12 months.
  • Sales and Orders Growth: IRC coaching and engagements resulted in $796.8 million in sales retained and $256.4 million secured in new customer orders.
  • Cost Savings: Companies engaging in consultative projects with regional IRCs reduced non-personnel operating costs by $187.1 million and avoided unnecessary expenditures of $36 million.
  • Investment in Innovation: Manufacturers invested over $376.8 million in new equipment, facility expansion, advanced technologies, and workforce training.

View 2023 IRC Economic Impact Infographic

The survey data, capturing the revenue, cost savings, regional investment, and job impacts reported by 575 IRC clients, was gathered by an independent market research firm, and confirmed by the U.S. Department of Commerce. To the Commonwealth, these impacts translate to incremental tax revenues. 

Rich Hobbs PhotoRich Hobbs, President & CEO of MRC which serves the Greater Lehigh Valley and surrounding counties, commented on the collective impact, ” These survey results are a testament to the benefits of strategic coaching, innovative solutions, and workforce development resources that manufacturers can access through partnering with Industrial Resource Centers like MRC for the comprehensive services we provide. Consider that more than 1,100 manufacturers called upon the IRC Network this past year and that the true extent of these results is even greater than this survey represents. “  

The Industrial Resource Center Network is made up of seven IRC affiliates:IRC Network 2023 Client Engagement Impact

About Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) – The Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) is a vital contributor to Pennsylvania’s manufacturing ecosystem, dedicated to empowering small and mid-sized manufacturers in Berks, Carbon, Lehigh, Northampton, and Schuylkill counties with innovative solutions, automated technologies, strategic insights, and workforce development. As the mid-eastern PA affiliate of the statewide Industrial Resource Center (IRC) Manufacturing PA initiative, MRC is committed to fostering resilience, growth, and competitiveness in Pennsylvania’s manufacturing sector. Learn more at

About the Industrial Resource Center (IRC) Network – Pennsylvania’s seven (7) Industrial Resource Centers (IRC) serve as the state’s lead economic development organizations, providing support to the manufacturing community. The IRCs specialize in technical assistance for the manufacturing sector by assisting companies with improved bottom-line strategies, productivity enhancement, waste elimination, and topline growth by supporting strategic initiatives, new and improved products, market differentiation, and workforce development strategies. Learn more at


Contact Information:
Patricia Felise | Media Relations  
Manufacturers Resource Center | (610) 628-4640                             

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