Interesting article on Dec. 26, 2013 by NPR’s Chris Arnold on the growth in higher-tech manufacturing processes in the U.S. It sheds light on what a lot of us know, that the new jobs in manufacturing will be there for those with the new skills needed to operate digital fabrication equipment… The article features Machine, Inc., in Stoughton, Massachusetts. The company’s founder notes:
He’s expanded his workforce by 30 percent from where it was just before the recession hit. And, he says, “we see growth over the next year.” Mileika says he’d like to hire more people — especially if he could find workers with the skills to run this equipment. Skilled workers like that are in short supply. And manufacturers like this one are working with local community colleges or vocational schools to try to train more workers more quickly.
The comment thread is interesting, once you get past the shouting and mud-slinging… one reader talks about how those who continue to innovate are the ones who succeed. “Successful manufacturing requires innovation and the most innovative is usually the winner.”
Read or listen to the entire story here. One area of the “new” manufacturing that the article ignores is the democratization (in other words, affordability and usability) of digital fab equipment, and what that means for growth in new entrepreneurial businesses — like ones getting their start here at 100kGarages. What do you think?