Where The Jobs Are: The Fastest Growing Sectors for Manufacturing

The manufacturing sector has shown some growth over the past few years.  Since 2011, the sector has created jobs every year, a 6-year expansion that exceeds the 5-year expansion experienced 1994-1998, according to a new report from consulting firm Headlight Data. The report showed that the industry has created nearly 500,000 new jobs in the last 6 years.  

This number should, however, be put in perspective, since the sector has lost 5 million jobs since 2000. 

Within the sector, one of the brightest spots has been the automotive sector.

“The automotive sector has seen a lot of improvement since the recession, “said Chris Engle, Headlight’s chief analyst. “The same is true of the aerospace sector. Major companies have expanded their operations in the Southeast and have brought a lot of jobs to the area.”

While Headlight Data is predicting slower growth this year, they do feel the sector will continue to be healthy. “The key factors to long term manufacturing growth in the U.S. are going to be the ability to maintain a healthy economy, maintain relationships with global trading partners and continue to invest in the workforce to increase productivity.

 “There is an opportunity for the U.S. to regain a foothold in industries that have left due to labor costs. We must take advantage of the opportunity,” Engle added.

 Transportation Equipment This sector added 270,000 jobs, representing an increase of 20% over the last five years. 

Transportation Equipment
This sector added 270,000 jobs, representing an increase of 20% over the last five years. 

 Fabricated Metal Products This sector employed 109,000, which represents an 8% increase over the five year period. 

Fabricated Metal Products
This sector employed 109,000, which represents an 8% increase over the five year period. 

 Food Products This sector added 95,000 which represents a 7% increase over the past five years. 

Food Products
This sector added 95,000 which represents a 7% increase over the past five years. 

 Plastics and Rubber Products This sector added 75,000 jobs, which represents a 12% increase over the past five years. 

Plastics and Rubber Products
This sector added 75,000 jobs, which represents a 12% increase over the past five years. 

 Beverages This sector added 66,000 jobs, which represents a 39% growth over the past five years

Beverages
This sector added 66,000 jobs, which represents a 39% growth over the past five years

 Machinery This sector added 50,000 jobs, which represents a 5% increase over the past five years.

Machinery
This sector added 50,000 jobs, which represents a 5% increase over the past five years.

 Wood Products This sector added 31,000 jobs, which represents a 9% increase in the past five years.

Wood Products
This sector added 31,000 jobs, which represents a 9% increase in the past five years.

 Nonmetallic Mineral Products This sector added 15,000 jobs, which represents a 4% increase over the past five years.

Nonmetallic Mineral Products
This sector added 15,000 jobs, which represents a 4% increase over the past five years.

 Primary Metals This sector added 10,000 jobs, which represents a 3% increase over the past five years.

Primary Metals
This sector added 10,000 jobs, which represents a 3% increase over the past five years.

 Chemicals This sector added 10,000 jobs, which represents a 1% increase.

Chemicals
This sector added 10,000 jobs, which represents a 1% increase.

 Electrical Equipment and Appliances This sector added 9,000 jobs, which represents a 2% increase over the past five years.

Electrical Equipment and Appliances
This sector added 9,000 jobs, which represents a 2% increase over the past five years.

 Furniture and Related Products This sector added 6,000 jobs, which represents a 1% increase over the past five years. 

Furniture and Related Products
This sector added 6,000 jobs, which represents a 1% increase over the past five years. 

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Lani Vu