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Posted 04/14/2016

Why Are Mid-Level Manufacturing Jobs Harder to Find?

What good is an “employee’s market” if the jobs one is qualified or searching for are quite limited? Why is it so challenging to find jobs “in-between” or mid-level? If talk among manufacturing firms overflows with the topic of “skills shortage” then why should mid-level employees have difficulty finding positions? The likelihood is this challenge encompasses a variety of reasons, each complex and intertwined, and none with a simple solution. Five reasons include: 1. The economy While the majority of Americans consider manufacturing critical to the country’s prosperity, standard of living, and national security, less than 20% of Americans would encourage their children to pursue a career in manufacturing. Further, the economy lost nearly 4 million mid-range jobs in the recession and has only recovered about 20% of these mid-range jobs post-recession, even though nearly 50% of entry level jobs have been recovered. 2. Trained worker availability, skills mismatch, or lack of STEM capability Though there may be a premium for STEM graduates, this pinpoints the root issue: manufacturers need to invest more in training people despite the possibility that once trained, the individual may leave for a job that pays only a few cents more an hou 3. Competition, outsourcing, automation, and declining pay levels The conundrum exists of how can one build job skills when mid-range jobs are either outsourced, automated, or substandard in pay levels. Further, job security and stability suffer when manufacturing jobs are the first to be moved to other countries so why should an employee take a chance on pursuing a career in manufacturing? The middle class may have “built America” but the wage has dropped below the median income for many of those former manufacturing occupations. 4. Leadership/changing workplace culture Presently, three generations of workers fill manufacturing jobs. Frequent cultural and workplace styles can cause conflicts over business objectives and productivity. These conflicts may redefine job levels and responsibilities to lessen interruptions in workflow. 5. Automation/ technology/robotics Lean manufacturing, as well as new technologies, sometimes replace a job formerly accomplished by a mid-range employee, or there could be a lack of skilled workers to fit the need for new technology. This reason harkens back to a training issue. How can you handle these challenges to finding a mid-level manufacturing job?  Be clear about your desires and goals
  • Present your qualifications and not just your responsibilities
  • Have solid and positive statements to potential objections
  • Be willing to learn new skills
  • Practice negotiating for what you want
  • Work with a specialized staffing firm, like MPS Technical, that understands and knows the manufacturing job market
MPS is working hard to connect talented individuals with companies. In fact, precision manufacturing is our primary language: we not only understand the needs of precision manufacturing companies, located in Minneapolis and surrounding areas, but also our staff focuses on providing you the best-fit job with seamless onboarding. Contact a branch located near you and discover the benefits of partnering with MPS Technical in your job search.  Let’s talk today.