If recent gains continue their upward momentum, 2017 is already shaping up to be a positive year of steady growth for the manufacturing industry. That’s encouraging news for companies and producers who have struggled to recover from the industrial recession of recent years, and this promising outlook is expected to drive further job growth and new employment opportunities across many related industries.
In December 2016, manufacturing expansion even saw its fastest rate of growth in two years, with order volume also showing some of the most significant gains since 2009. This recent boom is helping to spread new optimism across sectors of the manufacturing industry, and it’s spurring companies to create new jobs and fill more positions to help meet the increased demand. But looking beyond traditional manufacturing jobs, what impact will this have on other related job roles across the tech and engineering world?
Optimism on the Horizon
Manufacturing is often closely linked to economic growth, as it supports over 18.5 million jobs in the U.S. and comprises nearly 12% of our GDP. When the manufacturing sector is healthy and booming, it helps drive momentum and support throughout many interconnected industries, including food service, retail goods, public transportation, defense, and more.
In fact, every $1 spent on manufacturing creates $1.80 for the US economy, according to the National Association of Manufacturers, and this sector has one of the biggest economic multipliers on other industries in the country. Tech-driven industries in particular also gain a significant boost from manufacturing, which accounts for a larger percentage of the nation’s R&D expenditures.
When it comes to jobs, manufacturing-related careers span far beyond the most commonly expected roles of machinists, assemblers, and operators to include programmers, designers, and more. The manufacturing industry even employs more than third of the nation’s of engineers and scientists. As this boom in production demand continues, a wide range of jobs in the tech sector are expected to experience growth, too.
Manufacturing Tech Jobs
Here’s a look at some of the related jobs expected to experience growth from this upturn in the manufacturing sector.
1) Software Engineer: Responsible for researching, designing, coding, and maintaining custom software used in a wider range of applications, from apps and commercial network systems to internal machinery systems. This also can include tech support and software training duties.
2) Network/Security Engineer: This IT position is tasked with implementing and administering networks and servers, while also ensuring security protocols are in place and enforced to preserve the health and stability of the network.
3) Project Managers: The project manager’s role is to oversee and track all the moving pieces of a project to ensure everything is running smoothly and on-schedule. Additionally, this involves supporting key staff, being a liaison with upper management, and making sure the work stays within scope.
4) Manufacturing Engineer: Incorporating knowledge of design, assembly, materials, and research, manufacturing engineers evaluate machine systems and production processes with an eye to optimizing costs and maximizing efficiency.
5) Mechanical Engineer: Responsible for a wide range of powered machine systems, mechanical engineers design everything from electrical generators to air-conditioning systems.