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How Manufacturing Companies Get Younger Generations Interested in Manufacturing Careers

05-24-2018 05:15 PM CET | Business, Economy, Finances, Banking & Insurance

Press release from: Formaspace

Younger generations in manufacturing

Younger generations in manufacturing

At a time when the manufacturing industry is on the cusp of radical change driven by tech advances ranging from 3D printing to artificial intelligence powered robotics, there is a major problem. As Baby Boomers working in the manufacturing industry retire in droves, it turns out that younger people aren't very interested in taking their place. We take a look at what is being done to make manufacturing careers more appealing to younger generations.

Manufacturing Careers are in a State of Flux

It's a changing world.

At a time when we're trying to encourage manufacturing here at home, the underlying fundamentals of the manufacturing industry have been changing rapidly.

Production productivity has gone through the roof, thanks to revolutionary advances in automation. In other words, today's manufacturing industry can now produce more with fewer employees.

Yet even with the lower number of workers, manufacturers are having trouble finding enough skilled labor to fill the remaining positions. Why? Today's high-tech manufacturing careers require job candidates with higher levels of education and technical skills than ever before, which narrows the applicant pool significantly. This recruiting issue is further compounded by the huge number of Baby Boomers who are retiring every year.

The annual rate of change for wage and salary employment projected 2016-26

Unfortunately, this combination of investment in automation and shortage of available workers is dragging down manufacturing job growth projections. The U.S. Census estimates that manufacturing jobs will actually decline slightly between 2016 and 2020 relative to other fields of employment, as shown in their chart above.

To Encourage Young People to Pursue Manufacturing Careers, We First Need to do Some Market Research

Why can't managers find enough qualified candidates from the younger generations to fill the available jobs in manufacturing careers?

The answer seems to be that younger generations are by and large less interested in working in manufacturing compared to other fields.

But why?

Let's look at a little market research on the demographics, attitudes, and assumptions about work held by the Millennials and younger generations:

The chart above shows the percentage of employed 25 to 29-years-old with a bachelor's degree or more. Four-in-ten Millennial workers ages 25 to 29 had at least a bachelor's degree in 2016, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of Current Population Survey data. Source: Pew Research Center analysis of 1964, 1985, 2000, and 2016 Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplements (IPUMS).

Advantages of Younger Workers in Pursuit of Manufacturing Careers

• Millennials and younger generations are the most educated generations to date.

The chart above shows the percentage of employed 25 to 29-year-olds with a bachelor's degree or more. Four-in-ten Millennial workers aged 25 to 29 had at least a bachelor's degree in 2016, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of Current Population Survey data. Source: Pew Research Center analysis of 1964, 1985, 2000, and 2016 Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplements (IPUMS).

• As Digital Natives, they would be more naturally adept at working with computers and modern visualization systems (and the associated with automation and artificial intelligence tools) as compared to workers from older generations.

• Millennials helped create and lead the Maker Movement and its related components, ranging from 3D Printers to Etsy, to Maker Faires and Makerspaces.

Disadvantages when Recruiting Younger Workers into Manufacturing Careers

• Millennials report that they value fulfillment in their careers over more traditional rewards, such as making lots of money. (Manufacturing jobs can be among the highest paid, but this alone appears to be a less important inducement.)

• Census figures indicate that Millennials and younger generations are also less mobile in the workplace economy than previous generations of workers at their age. Thus, they are less likely to move away from home to a new area to pursue a career.

• Finally, the biggest problem: Millennials view manufacturing careers in a negative light. They consider manufacturing (and the related construction field) to be an unattractive, dirty field to work in that offers a less rewarding future than other fields.

How to Build a Marketing Campaign to Promote Manufacturing Careers

For those working in the manufacturing sector (include ourselves here at Formaspace), we see the world quite differently. Manufacturing is an exciting field that's on the cusp of major, even radical, changes brought about by the digital revolution.

What to do? Many in the manufacturing industry feel that a marketing campaign is an obvious answer.

So we'll put our marketing cap on for second and create a classic sales funnel to drive prospects through our marketing campaign.

Let's get started.

Read more ... https://formaspace.com/articles/manufacturing/get-younger-generations-interested-in-manufacturing-careers/?utm_source=prlog&utm_medium=content&utm_campaign=article-120917

Formaspace advances the spirit of discovery and creation through the design and manufacture of custom business furniture. Our furniture marries form to function with flexible solutions for clients in the laboratory, industrial, and office environments.

Formaspace serves over 80% of the Fortune 500, as well as universities, governments, small businesses, and individuals.

Formaspace
1100 E. Howard Lane, Suite 400 Austin, TX 78753
800.251.1505

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