Are Young Engineers Taking Over Manufacturing? What Does this Mean for Your Job Search?

The manufacturing sector has been a hotbed of hiring activity for young engineers in 2014. According to, 12% of the total demand for engineers with less than two years of experience came from the manufacturing sector.

The increase in demand for recent engineering graduates is due, in part, to an increase in global manufacturing. US manufacturing has also been on an upswing in recent years.  In fact, the US remains the largest manufacturing economy in the world, producing 21% of all manufactured products. The National Association of Manufacturers reports that US manufacturers annually contribute around $1.7 trillion to the economy.

Even with new money flowing into and through the manufacturing sector, companies have to stay on their toes. Competition is steep, especially among companies in Asia and those in emerging markets. Business leaders know that the only way to stay on top is to innovate. Young engineers in the sunrise of their careers are often seen as prime candidates for driving organizational innovation.

What Does This Mean for Established Engineers?

Engineers who are established in their careers may take this as a sign that they are being edged out by Millennials. This is not necessarily true. While technical skills are of the essence, employers are also looking for:

  • Adaptability
  • Willingness to learn
  • Collaborative experience
  • The ability to work as part of a team

As long as established engineers can show that they have both the technical chops and the soft skills to drive innovation, they can stay relevant in the marketplace.

These jobs are not a sure thing for younger workers, either. Though they may be seen as innovators, Millennials often have to fight against stereotypes, and in many cases it can be difficult to compete in the job market without valuable hands-on experience.

Gaining an Edge in the Marketplace

Whether an engineer is a recent graduate or has been working for many years, competition for jobs in the manufacturing sector is fierce and it can be difficult for engineers at any career stage to shine among a sea of hopeful and qualified candidates.

One of the best ways to gain an edge in the engineering marketplace is to partner with a recruiter. A professional recruiter will have a wide network of industry contacts and will know about open positions long before the general public. They can match their candidates to open positions based on skill sets and career goals, so that job seekers aren’t spinning their wheels and wasting time going after jobs that might not be a good match.

If you are an engineer in northern Illinois who is seeking new opportunities in the manufacturing sector, contact The Prevalent Group today. Our team of recruiters can help you locate   engineering jobs in northern Illinois that align with your skills, qualifications, and your long-term career goals.