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Manufacturing Industry

Electronics Field - The success of this industry is driven by technological innovations. One out of five jobs are in professional specialty areas, such as engineering and computer science. There is a revolution taking place in computers, semiconductors and telecommunications. Global demand is creating competition and great demand in this arena.

Electronics


Industry description

This field produces computer, televisions sets and audio equipment, with a large range of commercial and military products. These include computers and peripheral equipment, calculating and accounting machines, automated teller machines, telephone switching equipment, cellular phones radar and sonar, missile guidance systems and electronic warfare. The manufacture of semiconductors and micro-chips is the heart of most equipment.

Needs and initiatives

The rapid pace of this industry requires a high proportion of engineering and technical workers. With the need for highly technical semiconductors, there is an increasing demand for highly skilled workers. Research and development is vital to this industry. The first firm to market a new product, is usually the one with more profits. In fact, manufacturers cluster together, as electronic products contain many parts, purchased by other manufacturers. This in turn creates various centers of the electronics industry, such as "Silicon Valley," in areas such as Texas, Massachusetts and Oregon. Many products are both produced in the United States and abroad. The highly sophisticated semiconductors and computers are being designed in the United States, but there is great foreign competition.

Interests

Workers in this industry usually work in clean and noise-free environments. The computer chips are manufactured in "clean rooms" where there is not even a speck of dust on a computer chip. Most workers are employed for 40-hours, but pressure to develop new products may result in overtime for research and development personnel
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Electronics' Occupational Outlook


Greatest segment needs

The greatest needs in this industry are in research and development. Research, mathematical and physical scientists, electrical and computer engineers and technicians are vital to improve products. Engineering technicians then work closely with scientists and engineers to develop new products, install them and repair them. Production workers assemble and connect various electronic parts to circuit boards. Precision inspectors, testers and graders test products to ensure effectiveness.

Training

Entry level into the careers with the most demand in this industry require a bachelors degree in engineering or computer science. At the technician level there is a need for an aptitude in math and science. Even precision assembly requires formal technical training to keep up with the changing technology. Advancement opportunities are possible into supervisory, production or inspection operations.

Earnings

Earnings in this industry are fairly high. Engineers earn $28.42 to $32.24 per hour. Electrical and electronic technicians earn $15.88 to $18.44 per hour. First line supervisors earn about $15.80 to $16.58 per hour. Assemblers can earn a range of $8.24 to $11.24. Inspectors of products earn approximately $10.31 - $11.73.

Employment Outlook

Many of the jobs are in small companies. There are great opportunities for workers in research and development. Employment need is expected to grow about 9% between 1998 - 2008. Demand for computers is expected to remain strong. Employment in electronic components is expected to grow faster then average, while the demand for audio and video equipment employment is being replaced by automation. Much of the labor-intensive jobs are being moved to low-wage countries for production. The most outstanding needs are for semiconductors and cellular phones. This requires highly skilled personnel due to the increasing sophistication of manufacturing. The growth of digital technology, artificial intelligence and multimedia applications will continue to create new opportunities.


Food Processing - This industry employs some 1.7 million people. Most of the jobs are with employers hiring over 100 workers. The work is concentrated in Arkansas, Georgia, Iowa, North Carolina and Texas for meat packing. Wisconsin is known for cheese. California accounts for most of the fruit and vegetables, while Illinois, Pennsylvania and New York provide bakery products. One quarter of workers belong to unions.

Food Processing


Industry description

The food processing industry links farming and agricultural products to the consumer, by processing raw fruit, vegetables, grains, meats and dairy products into finished goods. One third of the industry is in meat processing and then 26% in bakery goods and preserved fruits and vegetables. Sugar and confectionery products are the smallest sector.

Needs and initiatives

Fierce competition has made food processing plants invest in technology to be more productive. Automation will have a profound effect on this industry's success combination of shifting patterns of eating to "ready-to-eat" dinners and growing exports will challenge this industry over the next decade.

Interests

Work in this industry is very physically demanding. Lifting of heavy objects, cutting, slicing, grinding and other dangerous activities. Injuries in this industry, especially in meat packing are double the usual average for injuries. Plants have reduced occupational hazards by re-designing equipment, increasing job rotation and allowing for more breaks and training. The work conditions are noisy and there is limited opportunity for interaction. The work in this field is not guaranteed to be steady.

Food
Processing
Occupational Outlook


Greatest segment needs

There are many food processing jobs in cannery working, hand decorating, food batch makers, dairy processing, blending, crushing, grinding and extruding machine operators. Then there are cooking, drying and baking machine operators. Many workers are needed for machinery repair, blue-collar supervisors, graders, inspectors and quality control technicians. To market the goods requires transportation employees. This industry also employs a number of managers and professional people, such as industrial and mechanical engineers, chemists, computer programmers and systems analysts, food technicians and technologists and then the sales force to market the products.

Training

Most jobs in processing require little education beyond high school. Specialized training though is provided in safety. Some workers need to be certified in food safety to work in the plants. Advancement comes with greater responsibility. Management requires a degree in personnel management, accounting, marketing and sales. Specialized master's and doctoral degrees are needed in chemistry, engineering and food science.

Earnings

Production workers average $9.66 in meat packing to $16.11 in beverage production, with the average at $11.80 per hour. Truck drivers are earning about $12.81 per hours, machinery mechanics $13.89 and supervisors at $15.49.

Employment Outlook

Employment is expected to grow more slowly then the 15% projected for the next decade. The more rapidly growing areas are in meat, poultry and fish. Automation of plants has cut down on machine operators and computers are replacing middle managers. There is quite the need though for workers with technical skills.

Printing and Publishing Field - About 22% of the jobs in this sector are managerial and professional. The largest part of this industry are newspapers, catalogs and advertisements. Most jobs are with small employers of under ten workers. There are about 125,000 self-employed workers ranking it amongst the largest of employers.

Printing and Publishing


Industry description

The printing industry produces products of a printed nature in the form of books, newspaper, magazines, postcards, pamphlets, advertisements, business forms, checks and maps.

Needs and initiatives

Many of the printing processes done by hand are now becoming automated. There are three stages of printing which include prepress, press and post-press which includes the binding and trimming of printed pages. The most changes are occurring in the prepress stage where cutting and pasting has been replaced with computer desktop publications. Nearly all pre-press work will be computerized in the next decade. All workers will be expected to have training in electronics, computers and mathematics. Many segments of this industry are producing publications electronically on the Internet, C-D ROM and audio and video tapes. The market for design on the Internet is growing rapidly.

Interests

The average worker in this industry works about 38.3 hours. Most work an 8 hour day. Overtime is required to meet many publication deadlines. Many employees work nights, weekends and holidays. Some work environments, such as press operation are noisy. Typesetters work in quiet atmospheres, but much of the work is extremely detail oriented.


Printing and Publishing Occupational Outlook


Greatest segment needs

There is a variety of jobs available from production to sales. Many of the jobs that are in demand include, pre-press printing, precision compositors, job printers, desktop publishing, camera operators, lithographic dot etchers, photoengravers, print press operators and book binders. Film strippers and typesetters, platemakers and paste-up workers are being replaced by desktop publishing and electronic printing methods. In addition to the production jobs there are needs for administrative support staff, marketing and sales workers and professional specialty occupations. Customer service representatives are becoming more important to act as a liaison between clients and production workers. There are also needs for news analysts, reporters and correspondents to gather information and prepare stories.

Training

Training in this industry can begin with a high school diploma, but there is a greater need for proficiency in mathematics, verbal and written information. Management trainees need a college education , as well as graphic artists who need junior college or 4-year college degrees. Bachelor's degrees are needed for journalism and communication. In any jobs a working knowledge of computers is vital. The technological innovations in this decade will continue to demand new work procedures and retraining.

Earnings

Salaries vary with the amount of technical training and the level of education obtained. Bindery workers average about $9.69, with reporters and correspondents at $12.94, print press operators at $12.56, sales agents and advertising working for $13.24. Offset lithographic press setters at $14.55, writers making $17.38 per hour and general managers topping the scales at $30.29 per hour.

Employment Outlook

Employment needs are expected to decline for the next decade, due to atomization of many of the production processes. There is also competition for non-print media via the Internet. There is strong advertising competition in this industry as the Internet continues to expand. There is a slight increase in periodical literature, such as professional, scientific and technical journals.

Aerospace - Aerospace manufacturing provides over 615,000 wage and salary jobs in 1998, which is done in over 1,800 establishments. Over seventy percent of the jobs are in aircraft parts, guided missiles and spacecraft. The largest numbers of aerospace jobs are in California, Washington, Texas, Connecticut, Kansas, Florida and Arizona. The Federal government is the largest consumer of the aerospace industry with defense contracts.

Aerospace


Industry description

This industry is comprised of companies producing civil and military aircraft, guided missiles, space vehicles, aircraft engines and propulsion units. This industry remains a dominant part of the international market with highly trained staff and significant research. The industry is in the leading edge of technology and constantly striving for new products. One example is the research into military aircraft which has been applied to commercial applications. In addition, the aircraft space vehicles have applications not only for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Department of Defense (DOD) but telecommunication companies, network and news organizations use this technology.

Needs and initiatives

This industry is undergoing significant changes to keep up with the need to cut costs and improve manufacturing time. One of the ways this is being done is to reduce subcontracting and create development teams with customers, engineers and production workers.

Interests

The manufacturing conditions in this industry vary, and older facilities are being phased out. Generally they are well lit and modern. Engineers, scientists and technicians usually work in office settings and laboratories.

Aerospace Occupational Outlook


Greatest segment needs

This industry largely needs skilled production workers, professional specialty and technicians to manage design processes, factory operations and to coordinate the hundreds of thousands of parts for the assembly of the aircraft. There is a very strong demand for computer scientists, engineers and systems analysts. There is also a need for managerial and administrative support occupations. Aerospace, mechanical, electrical and computer engineers are an intregal member of research, design, test and production process. Many mangers in industrial production have engineering degrees and supervise engineering, computer and technical activities which are vital to the central function of aerospace products. There is a need for financial managers, purchasing agents, cost estimators and accountant.

Training

Because so much of this industry depends upon research and development a bachelor's, master's or even Ph.D. degree is needed in specialized fields such as engineering. For production, vocational trained workers are needed in machining, sheet metal, tool and die work and inspectors to test the quality control of products.

Earnings

The industry in general pays wages above the average norm. However, this is due to the need for highly trained workers and the high cost of aerospace products. Aeronautical engineers earn approximately $35.00 per hour, with mechanical engineers at $25.00 an hour. Supervisors make a little more then assemblers at $20.70 per hour, while the assemblers earn about $19.65 an hour. Mechanical technicians make about $18.52 and inspectors earn $17.03, while machinists make $15.48 an hour.

Employment Outlook

This industry is expected to grow by 22 percent from 1998 - 2008, compared to 15 percent for the overall economy. Employment in aircraft production is expected to be the largest, while missiles and space vehicles are only expected to increase by 3 percent. The defense industry has experienced declines since the 1980's, but the civilian aircraft has good opportunities. Aircraft are aging and domestic fuel emissions and noise standards require modification and replacement. In addition the Internet, direct broadcasting and wireless communication services such as cellular phones and pagers increase the need for telecommunication equipment.

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