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Are You Prepared for the Growth in Manufacturing?

Manufacturing Hiring Trends

The state of manufacturing in the United States has undergone a major change in the past few years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 11.4M employees in manufacturing in January 2010; as of December of 2017, that number has grown to nearly 12.6M. That’s more than a 10% increase over a seven-year span. According to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, the numbers for Minnesota show even more growth, going from 284,313 to 320,513. That is a growth of nearly 13% over that same seven-year period. Having a strategy in place to handle the growth in manufacturing is becoming more and more of a necessity for companies moving forward. Manufacturing companies will need to identify, hire, train, and retain the talent that best fits into their culture.


Balancing In-House Career Paths with Hiring Top Talent

Some organizations have chosen to keep their solution in-house. They have built teams of talented individuals and are pipe-lining the talent by creating career paths for their employees. The benefit to this approach is obvious. By bringing in high-quality talent in to your organization, you are raising the bar for the entire company, forcing everyone to get used to a new and higher level of normal. This allows your employees the ability to grow within your organization and identify one or more routes in which they could continue to progress. The downfall of this approach tends to lie in the retention of the talent. If the path doesn’t progress fast enough or if there is a logjam from one level to the next, that talent will leave for growth opportunities outside of the organization.

Other organizations have chosen to work with external partners, such as search firms, to assist with the identification and acquisition of new talent. This approach allows you to bring in fresh ideas that may view things differently and allow your company the ability to overcome any plateaus in growth. It also provides the opportunity to fill in gaps of talent by targeting candidates with specific skill sets that could offset any current deficiencies that exist in your company. Potential pitfalls to this approach exist as well. There is the obvious added cost of paying a search firm, but what happens if you choose the wrong firm? The wrong search firm would not only fail to deliver the right candidates but could also damage the perception of the company out in the marketplace. Choosing the right firm is crucial to the success of this strategy.

The world of manufacturing has been riding a roller coaster called the US Economy. It has taken us to new heights and then plummeted into a dark abyss only to bring us back again—and it will remain unpredictable. The best part is that we are currently in growth mode. Small to mid-sized manufacturing companies are once again investing in their infrastructure with new capital equipment, hardware, software, and most importantly people. People have always been and will continue to be any company’s best asset, especially when it comes to manufacturing. Having an employee strategy in place to help will prove itself invaluable moving forward. Whether it is building a pipeline of talent within the organization, utilizing outside resources as partners, or a combination of both, you’ll need a plan in place to handle the growth of the industry. What’s your strategy?


If your company needs help finding the right talent, contact us today! For more career tips and advice check out Versique’s blog.


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