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Maintaining Strong Growth in the Manufacturing Industry

The manufacturing industry has seen wide swings of ups and downs over the last few decades. The reshoring effort continues and our industry is growing as a result. But what are the key solutions that help our industry progress in an affirmative direction while digging beyond the surface of reshoring? The experts at Astro are here to relay such findings.

Over the last year we have been involved in many online conversations that stir the manufacturing industry pot – one of the most prevalent being, “This is not you grandfather’s (insert topic discussion here).” The discussion starts with something like job or shop and reaches farther to industry, factory, etc.

The changes that we’ve seen as we cross pollinate generations are more than positive. In a recent article on fortune.com, Frauenheim and Peters detail that workers are currently becoming the “biggest asset” to growing the manufacturing sector. The target was once how many heads you could count on the shop floor. The more workers there are the more gets done, right? Wrong. Although logically and mathematically that might have seemed like a plausible solution the most important find today is a worker who knows what he/she is doing. They must have key, in-depth industry knowledge, be able to successfully work a project from start through finish, and work hard while sticking to important deadlines. Now it becomes a little clearer why it can be hard to find a suitable person for the job.

One of the answers to this problem becomes STEM education. As manufacturing grows, this kind of education will continue to help reach multiple goals such as reducing the skills gap, reshoring, and increasing both applicants and workers as a whole. STEM education is now embraced by school districts and communities across the country to boost instruction on science, technology, engineering, and math. These are the foundations needed for leading students into technology based fields, including those in manufacturing. With the increased skills required to run high-tech machinery and state of the art equipment in the modern factory, STEM education is the foundation for closing the skills gap and preparing for careers in manufacturing.

The discussion of the economy goes hand in hand with reshoring, STEM education, and bridging the generation gap. It is a loud topic, oftentimes worrisome to many, but business commerce is putting up a strong fight. With manufacturing companies being notarized in Fortune and Great Place to Work and job security on the table, there is no doubt that the industry is stirring buzz and interest to attract quality workers of all age ranges who are ready and willing to go the extra mile, “Notes Saxena: ‘This whole notion of ‘the whistle blows and I’m out of here,’ and that ‘the job is just a place where I spend eight hours’ – that’s just not accurate anymore.’” All in all, it seems that manufacturing has created a soft spot for many qualified candidates to land.

Although the skills shortage is an ongoing debate the trust that standing workers have will continue to pull rank as we move into the future, “Keeping that turnover low will offer a real advantage to these companies in the years ahead. As the president of the National Association of Manufacturers recently pointed out, the sector is expected to create 3.5 million new jobs in the next decade […].”

“It’s not your granddad’s factory anymore” is right. Times are changing and the U.S. manufacturing industry is ready to put up a fight to ensure growth of products, services, and job security. The eb and flow of any sector’s economy is enough to keep all involved parties on edge, but we are proud to be a part of the industry that shows strength in the face of adversity – to be a part of a healthy and functioning team that is committed to contributing to a healthy and stronger America.

Interested in learning more about the industry? Continue to follow our blog at: http://www.astromachineworks.com/blog/ or contact us today to speak with an expert for your custom machine building and fabrication needs. As leaders in the industry for 30+ years we too share the overwhelming desire to contribute to our sector as best we can.