Tips for Hiring Qualified Manufacturing Help in 2017


Will your company be looking to hire in 2017?  Recent reports are showing many companies continue to slowly but steadily add manufacturing positions but the issue is becoming finding qualified workers.  As manufacturing began to decline in the early 2000’s and then dramatically with the recession in 2009 the majority of those laid off were the lowest level, least skilled workers.  As companies moved out of the recession many moved towards more automated equipment requiring more skilled workers to operate them.  This has created a chasm between jobs that need filled and the quality of worker currently available.

Many companies are having to go beyond the traditional method of simply posting a job opening and then reviewing the applications or resumes submitted.  One Cleveland based company stated that of the 3600 applications they received last year only 47 applicants passed a basic skills test showing they could read and do math at a 9th grade level.  This resulted in an incredibly frustrating amount of wasted hours sorting through applications from people unqualified for the job available.

There are some specific places that many companies are having success finding qualified workers quickly, and may be the best place to start with your next job posting.

  1. Technical or Trade Schools – contact your local tech or trade school with the job posting you have available. Many schools have staff members who work with local businesses to help find the right students to fill the open position.  They may have students looking to work opposite shifts from their schooling such as 2nd or 3rd shift, or they may have students looking for internship and apprenticeship opportunities.  This can often be a great way for companies to get higher educated workers at a lower initial cost.  Many of these students are eager to learn new equipment or skills are get brought in for long term employment upon graduation.  They often come with the right mind set to learn.
  2. Veterans Associations – contact a Veterans Employment Representative at an American Job Center. This organization will be able to help match up a qualified veteran for the job opening you have available.  You could also list your job opening on your state job bank  There are many hard working veterans looking to utilize their current military skills as well as develop new areas to make them more employable.  There are also countless non-profit organizations ready to help business owners find qualified veterans as well, such as In addition to getting a great worker you may also qualify for some additional tax benefits from hiring a veteran.  It’s also been found that employee turnover rates are lower amongst veterans which can help protect your investment in time spent training a new employee.

Certainly there are many applicants likely to knock on your door when you post a job opening but being able to quickly narrow down your search to those most qualified and most motivated can be worth the additional effort up front.  Taking the time to pursue other methods of employee recruitment could save you substantial money in the long run.

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