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Occupational openings in manufacturing careers, projected 2022–32

| October 2023

Manufacturing continues to be an important industry in the United States. In 2022, manufacturing accounted for about 15 percent of economic output—the highest percentage of any industry subsector.

Workers in manufacturing produce a variety of goods, including clothes, airplane parts, and food. From 2022 to 2032, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects thousands of openings each year in occupations that are employed primarily in manufacturing. (See chart.)

Openings arise from employment growth and from the need to replace workers who permanently leave an occupation to retire, to enter a different occupation, or for other reasons. Of the occupations in the chart, assemblers and fabricators is projected to have the most openings, with an average of 188,600 per year over the decade. Note that openings are projected for the occupations overall, not just in manufacturing industries.

Wages vary in these occupations, as do the education typically required to enter and the on-the-job training typically needed to attain competency. For example, wages for the highest paying occupations, industrial production managers and industrial engineers, were more than double the $46,310 median for all occupations in 2022 ($107,560 and $96,350, respectively). A bachelor’s degree is typically required to enter both occupations, with production managers also needing 5 or more years of related work experience. However, neither occupation requires on-the-job training to attain competency.

To learn about duties, wages, outlook, education, and more for these occupations and hundreds of others, visit the Occupational Outlook Handbook.

Dustin Riles is an economist in the Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections, BLS.

Suggested citation:

Dustin Riles, "Occupational openings in manufacturing careers, projected 2022–32," Career Outlook, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, October 2023.

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