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Manufacturing Matters: The Different Career Pathways

Post Author Ben Johnson
Dec 20, 2021 9:00:00 AM
Career Tips
Finding Your Career Path: Manufacturing Matters

Manufacturing is important and vital for the American economy. In this series, we will be looking at the many ways manufacturing helps our country. We first looked at the history of manufacturing, then discussed its role today. Now, we will take a look at the different career paths you can take in the manufacturing world. 


Something that could lead to confusion in manufacturing is the career path a person can take. Many people mistakenly believe that there is minimal room for growth. The reality is that there are many career paths a person can take in the manufacturing industry. There are many pathways available, some of which include:

  • Environmental, Health, and Safety
  • Logistics and Inventory Control
  • Maintenance, Installation, and Repair
  • Manufacturing Production Development
  • Production
  • Quality Assurance

There are multiple careers that you can take in manufacturing, and many of them with just a high school diploma or two-year degree.

New Career Fairs Pathways

Environmental, Health, and Safety Pathway

This path focuses on the safety of manufacturing workplaces and products. They are in charge of health and safety inspections, safety trainings, removing harmful materials, and keeping the work space up to date with the latest laws and regulations

Examples of career path:

  • Production - Hazardous Materials Removal Worker - Transportation Inspector
  • Environmental Science Technician - Health and Safety Engineer- Environmental Scientist

Logistics and Inventory Control Pathway

These jobs focus on the planning and movement of materials to and from sites. They deal with the delivery and monitoring of raw materials and finished products.

Examples of career path:

  • Hand Packer - Production Clerk - Loss Prevention Manager
  • Traffic Clerk - Planning Clerk - Purchasing Agent

Maintenance, Installation, and Repair Path

This path involves the machinery and technical equipment. These jobs install and maintain the manufacturing equipment while also running regular tests to check the condition of the equipment.

Examples of career paths:

  • Fabric Mender - Locksmith- Sheet Metal Worker
  • Maintenance and Repair Worker - Industrial Machinery Mechanic - Electrical Engineer

Manufacturing Production Development Path

This is the design part of manufacturing. The people in this path design the goods that are made and the production processes used to make them.

Examples of career path:

  • Industrial Engineering Technician - Materials Engineer -Environmental Scientist
  • Production - Industrial Production Manager - Mechanical Engineer

Production Path

This path is where the materials are assembled into the finished products. These workers use machinery, computers, and tools to assemble the product.

Examples of career path:

  • Production Helper - Molder/Shaper/Caster - Machinist
  • Machine Feeder - Hoist Operator-Tool and Die Maker

Quality Assurance Path

The quality assurance pathway includes workers who assure that standards and procedures are adhered to and that delivered products or services meet performance requirements by monitoring and maintaining the quality of parts and manufacturing processes.

Examples of career path:

  • Inspector - Industrial Production Manager - Validation Engineer
  • Tester - Quality Control Analyst - Quality Assurance Engineer

A study from the Economic Policy Institute found that manufacturing workers earn 13 percent more in hourly compensation than comparable workers earn in the rest of the private sector, and manufacturing workers have an advantage in benefits as well.

Manufacturing is a viable industry for successful career paths. MAU is proud to offer many jobs supporting the manufacturing industry.  Click here to see some of our openings.

This report used information from:




Read our other blogs in our Manufacturing Matters here:

The History of Manufacturing in the US

Manufacturing Today

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