Recruiting and hiring manufacturing workers in a tech-driven world
As the manufacturing process has evolved, so have the skills that workers need to get the job done. These manufacturing companies know how to find manufacturing talent—and keep them happy and engaged.
With so much attention on the technology sector, many people have forgotten one of the bedrocks of American business: manufacturing. According to government statistics, manufacturing is one the leading industries in the country. For example, information services—such as software and internet publishing—increased by 4.5 percent this year. Over the same time period, manufacturing increased by 8.4 percent.
That’s good news for manufacturing businesses—at least for those companies that have kept up with technology. The challenge for them now is coming up with recruiting strategies when it comes to hiring manufacturing employees they need.
Manufacturing up, recruiting business down
It’s not easy recruiting in a competitive market. In a survey of more than 400 recruiters, Monster reported that 62 percent of respondents said it’s harder to find quality candidates for their companies than it used to be.
“In today’s market, it’s not only about what the candidate can contribute to the company, but what can the company contribute to the candidate,” says Brian Kingston, HR director at MC Assembly in Melbourne, Florida.
Manufacturers have to do more than make great products. They have to make great places to work. Here are three recruiting ideas for manufacturing you may want to consider for your company.
1. Build an early pipeline
Andrew Gilbert, director of operations at Caretta Workspace in Ohio, knows one way to get quality candidates. His company built a better pipeline.
“We partner with local trade programs and high school shop classes to get in front of candidates before they even graduate,” he said. “Identifying candidates that are open to learning manufacturing skills is the key to having a successful employee-training program.”
Hiring manufacturing employees through better pipelines also helps connect your company with your local community, where you can develop important business relationships and let your reputation take root. Here are a few recruiting ideas to build those pipelines:
- Give presentations or workshops for local high schools or community colleges
- Participate in a mentorship program (or help create one) in the local school district
- Host a public event (e.g., a job fair or a public awareness event highlighting your company’s role)
- Host a fundraiser or community challenge event (e.g., a recycling challenge)
2. Offer apprenticeships
Bryan Mullett, CEO of Bradley Corp. in Wisconsin, has another idea for recruiting manufacturing workers: Bring in potential employees through paid apprenticeships.
“Bradley teamed up with non-profit group GPS Education Partners to launch an in-house manufacturing school and apprenticeship program at its headquarters/plant with the idea of ultimately hiring the trained students upon graduation,” he said.
Throughout the year, high school juniors and seniors can attend academic and skilled trades classes at the company headquarters. Students can also work as paid apprentices after school, through school breaks, and summer vacation.
3. Use social media
In the increasingly digital world we live in, the manufacturing industry is sometimes seen as a relic of the past. Tech jobs will replace manufacturing jobs, or so the story goes. The truth is, as long as we need things (like our incredible tech devices), we need manufacturing. And manufacturing itself is often a great driver for technological innovation.
When it comes to recruiting, manufacturing companies should utilize technology to connect with a more digitized workforce. Social media is one tool that you can use to find your workforce among younger generations. As with any online business, you can use social media to:
- Notify people of training opportunities, and to obtain feedback
- Highlight employee testimonials about your company
- Promote company news and initiatives
- Target key audiences and join relevant communities
Find the best manufacturing talent with Monster’s help
Do you need help hiring manufacturing employees for your company? They may be hard to find in a tight labor market, but there are tools to make sure your company is on the cutting edge when it comes to hiring. Go to Monster Hiring Solutions for analysis, expert tips, and the latest information to help you recruit and hire the talent you need.