The manufacturing industry represents a dynamic, innovative, and rapidly-evolving segment of the modern economy, and young people who enter the field right now will shape the growth and direction of tomorrow’s innovations, like 3d-printing, sustainable materials, green technologies and custom product design. But far too often, these young students don’t recognize the benefits of a manufacturing career. And just as often, parents steer young people away from this field because they labor under a few damaging myths about the industry. If some of these myths sound familiar, it might be time to take a closer look at this promising career path.
Myth #1: Manufacturing doesn’t pay
When you picture a “manufacturing job”, you might imagine inspectors standing beside a conveyor belt or assembly line. Or you might envision welders or metal fabricators attaching parts to automobiles on a hot, dirty shop floor. Some of these jobs still take place as you imagine, but the modern manufacturing floor looks very different than it did 20 years ago. And the jobs that happen in this facility pay more and offer more room for advancement than you might believe.
Myth #2: Manufacturing isn’t for young people
Manufacturing, engineering, design, drafting, and machine tooling jobs are for everyone—including young people, people of every gender and background, and those with every degree of education from a PhD to a high school diploma. Outdated stereotypes are rapidly fading as a new generation steps into the modern manufacturing workplace.
Myth #3: Manufacturing has no future
During the last few decades of the 20th century, manufacturing jobs rapidly moved overseas as company owners and decision makers looked for ways to access cheaper labor, avoid tax obligations, and dodge environmental restrictions designed to protect US citizens from pollution and toxins in their air and water. But while the overseas migration of factories and fabrication facilities hit the industry hard in the 1980s and 1990s, this trend now seems to be moving in reverse. Due to a variety of factors, including shifting labor costs, improved communication technology, and the shape of the modern marketplace, companies are now returning to domestic shores and manufacturing opportunities in many fields are expanding, not closing down.
Myth #4: Manufacturing is not safe
Manufacturing facilities are more advanced, innovative, efficient, safe, and green than ever before. Worker protections are stronger, regulations safeguarding employees and the environment are on the rise, and as productivity increases, so does the quality of life for those who enter this field. Unions remain strong in many aspects of the industry, and the resulting reductions in exploitation and injury make this field safer, cleaner and more attractive to talented young workers with a wide array of other options.
For more information on the benefits of a career in manufacturing, reach out to the Little Rock job search and management experts at CSS.