Working in Manufacturing: Looking Forward to 2023
July 11, 2022 7:00:00 PM

As we enter into post-pandemic life, job seekers need to know what manufacturing jobs will look like in the future and how to get one. Today, we’re taking a look to breakdown what the manufacturing industry will be facing in the next year.  

As the world eases into post-pandemic life, our economy continues to be in flux. One of the biggest concerns is what manufacturing jobs will look like in the coming year, and while our economy may be slowing down, the need for workers doesn’t seem to be. The most recent US job report showed that there were 11.25 million job openings in June, which outnumber available workers by almost 2 to 1. Manufacturing is no exception as the industry is projected to have 2.1 million unfulfilled jobs by 2030. This means that there is ample opportunity for those looking to go into manufacturing.

Manufacturing is a great career for those looking for more technical careers or something that is hands-on. Manufacturing also offers much more flexibility in terms of work schedules than the typical 9 to 5, which can give workers more control over creating a schedule that fits into their lifestyle. However, the rapidly changing market makes things a little more complicated. Here are some ways in which manufacturing careers will change in the next year and what someone should consider as they pursue a manufacturing career.

Manufacturing is Looking to Retain Talent
One of the biggest hurdles manufacturing is facing post-pandemic is attracting and retaining talent. In a recent survey conducted by Deloitte, 77% of manufacturers said they are having difficulty finding new workers and keeping them in industrial work. Executives said that they struggle to fill even higher-pay entry-level positions, as well as retain skilled workers for specialized roles. The report goes on to say that finding talent is 36% harder than it was in 2018, even though the unemployment rate has nearly doubled, and the need shows no signs of slowing down. In 2021 there were 408,000 job openings.
While this is a problem for business leaders, it’s great news for people looking to enter the manufacturing field. Salary, shifts, and work-life balance are all being re-evaluated. MAU recently released a survey at the end of 2021 examining what current workers are looking for in a job, which you can read here. Because of shifting ideas towards work, companies are having to change their salary and shift schedules in order to keep talent, or else they are losing workers to companies that do. This means that workers have better options to make more money and pick shifts they want as they enter manufacturing; however, job seekers also need to be aware that the types of jobs companies are looking to fill.

What Manufacturers are Looking For
There are five manufacturing positions that are in demand: manufacturing production supervisor, machine operator, pickers and packers, machinists, and carpenters. Let’s dive in and see what each position entails.

  • Manufacturing Production Supervisor
    Manufacturing production supervisors work closely with plant workers to manage the processes and operations of the industrial plant. This position can be in charge of the operations of an entire plant or just specific divisions within the facility. Most of the time, manufacturing production supervisors are responsible for ensuring that the raw materials and supplies needed are stocked and available whenever needed to maintain a consistent and safe work environment.
  • Machine Operator
    A machine operator can perform a variety of tasks that are required to set up, monitor, operate, or troubleshoot the problems in machines at the plant. As different tools and machines undergo wear and tear, machine operators will also be in charge of monitoring decay and inspecting the parts of the machine to ensure they work as they are supposed to. This means that they will need to adjust manufacturing equipment or replace old tools to maintain a consistent working environment.
  • Pickers and Packers
    One of the most necessary positions in manufacturing is pickers and packers. They are responsible for pulling the completed merchandise from shelves and preparing them for shipping. This position is fast-paced as the pickers and packers have to meet strict deadlines and work quickly to ensure items are shipped as quickly as possible. These employees need to be able to meet deadlines and complete assigned projects in a matter of minutes to keep a steady flow of products and not hold up the supply chain.
  • Machinists
    Machinists are responsible for using tools to create or modify machinery parts that are meant to be sold in the manufacturing plant. In order to perform this role, workers will be required to have some electrical or manufacturing experience, but most employers are willing to provide the education and opportunities needed. Machinists work to refine parts and ensure the desired outcome happens.
  • Carpenters
    Carpenters are different from other manufacturing positions because these workers work primarily with wood, while most other positions work with metal or plastic components. Carpenters use wood to build objects like cabinets and furniture for commercial use in businesses or homes. In this position, employees will need to have the knowledge and skill to cut, shape and install building materials, which requires some formal training; however, work experience is often taken into account by employers.

While these are the most sought for jobs in manufacturing, these are far from the only jobs the industry is searching for. Take a look at MAU’s job board here to see what other positions manufacturers are needed to fill.

Looking Beyond 2023
While these jobs are what manufacturers are looking for now, there are other positions that will be needed in the coming decade. Digital skills, quality control, and soft skills are all attributes that manufacturers will be needing in the near future, which means that manufacturing may be a career option for people who had never considered the industry. There are many opportunities in the manufacturing space, and with a little creativity, one could find a place to belong as the industry moves further into the digital age. We will look more into how someone can find success in manufacturing in the coming weeks, but it is safe to say that if you are looking for a place in the manufacturing industry, there is a place for you.


About MAU

MAU Workforce Solutions is an innovative global company with extensive experience providing solutions for success in staffing, recruiting, technology and outsourcing to our clients, employees and applicants. Headquartered in Augusta, GA since 1973, MAU is a family and minority-owned company offering better processes and better people to create efficiencies and greater profits for our clients. Our relationships with world-class companies, our training programs and our culture of family allow MAU to offer better results, better jobs and better lives to those who work with us. For additional information about MAU, visit www.mau.com.