When you hear the word manufacturing, an image probably pops into your mind. Maybe it’s the poor working conditions of the Industrial Revolution? Maybe it’s the booming U.S. factories of the 1960s and 1970s? Or, maybe it’s the abandoned manufacturing plants in America’s Rust Belt?
Today, manufacturing doesn’t fit any of these models. Here are three facts you may find surprising.
- Manufacturing Workers Earn Above the National Average
Traditionally, we tend to think of manufacturing employees as blue-collar workers, but their paid rates are competitive. Based on data from February 2016, the average manufacturing employee made $25.58 per hour compared to an hourly rate of $21.32 for the average American worker. In addition, as of 2018, 92 percent of manufacturing employees were eligible for health benefits provided by their employer. This is considerably higher than the 79 percent average for all firms.
- Manufacturing Continues to Be an Important Part of the U.S. Economy
Certainly, the glory days of manufacturing were in the 1970s, when 19.5 million Americans worked in factories. However, after hitting an all-time employment low in 2009, manufacturing is making a comeback. Today, there are 12.82 million manufacturing employees in the United States. To put this in perspective, that’s about 8 to 9 percent of the total workforce.
Also, manufacturing brings in money. Over the past few decades, American manufacturers have become leaner and more competitive in the global marketplace. Since 1987, the output per hour for U.S. manufacturing workers has increased more than 2.25 times. As a result, manufacturing accounts for 12 percent of the GDP. According to 2018 data, this was a contribution of $2.38 trillion. And, for every $1.00 spent in manufacturing another $1.40 is added to the economy. This is the highest multiplier of any sector.
- The U.S. Needs More Skilled Manufacturing Workers
Experts predict manufacturing will create 4.6 million jobs in the next decade. Unfortunately, up to 2.4 million of these positions may go unfilled because of the skills gap. Therefore, manufacturers are pushing for an increase in STEM education careers to create and maintain their workforces. A lack of qualified talent could potentially cost as much as $2.5 trillion in reduced output between now and 2028.
Are You Thinking About a Career in Manufacturing?
Connectology can help you explore some of the most dynamic opportunities in the manufacturing industry. We make placements throughout the St. Croix Valley and the Twin Cities region. Search our available jobs and launch your future today!