While the manufacturing and industrial labor markets are changing, they still remain a powerful force in the country. However as the industries evolve and cities face restraint, it leaves us wondering, where will they turn?
A Loss in Skilled Labor
According to Forbes, industrial employment has surged over the past five years, with the sector adding some 855,000 new jobs, a 7.5% expansion.
However, as the industry is expanding, the skilled labor roles are also changing. Previously, companies invested in employees within each specific manufacturing skill. For example, companies would need a specialized electrician, mechanic, hydraulic engineer, etc. Now, they’re looking for a single skilled worker that can handle all of those roles. As technology continues to streamline many manufacturing processes, the highly skilled employee is still in need to oversee production. As the manufacturing revolution continues, jobs are becoming less physical and manual. Yet the man power in these roles are still much higher than other industries.
Consequently, the highly skilled laborers are aging out of the workforce, causing the demand for these role to increase. From skilled maintenance workers and welders to industrial engineers, businesses are finding it difficult to source these jobs as they’re in short supply.
Where do they turn in this economy?
Businesses positioned near growing labor pools have a hand up during these shortages. Communities that have access to higher education systems in the manufacturing and engineering fields can benefit business. When these students are ready to move onto their career, manufacturing positions are within reach. It’s a win-win for both the employee and employer. The employer enjoys a steady flow of hires which benefits them in the long-term.
Whether it be a training program or grant from a business to cultivate the skilled labor needed or positioning a relocation near a relevant technical college, businesses have opportunity to surround themselves with their ideal workers.
A Reliable Location
As advanced manufacturing businesses start to realize their current marketplace may no longer be sufficient for the long-term, where do they look? According to Forbes, there’s a shift to smaller cities. Some companies are moving south to be surrounded by energy hotbeds or transitioning to the smaller cities where there’s a dispersed industrial base.
These smaller, emerging cities have ample access to the resources businesses need, from highways to infrastructure. As primary markets become oversaturated and resources become exhausted, companies must look to these emerging markets.
For instance, many industrial businesses are flocking to Midlothian, TX for its amenity- and resource-rich environment. Located just 30 miles south of the DFW metroplex, Midlothian enjoys easy access to both Fort Worth and Dallas without being directly impacted by traffic, safety concerns, and oversaturated markets. Getting the best of both worlds, manufacturing companies can enjoy the business-friendly environment of small communities like Midlothian, while also having access to big city resources. From LNG natural plants and cement plants to advanced manufacturing, Midlothian is a well-positioned site for industrial-based companies to call home. See for yourself:
Water — With the current infrastructure, the city of Midlothian can comfortably treat up to 15 million gallons of water per day.
Fuel — According to the EIA, the natural gas storage capacity in Texas is among the largest in the nation.
Transportation — Midlothian's available transit include, direct access to 4 major highways, 2 major railways, and 2 major airports.
Land — With a large selection of available sites, Midlothian enjoys the following:
• RailPort Business Park, a 1,600-acre, dual-rail-served business park suited for large-scale distribution.
• Midlothian Business Park, a 140-acre development equipped for speciality-manufacturing industrial projects.
Electricity — Oncor operates the largest distribution and transmission system in Texas and serves more than 10 million customers across Texas.
Workforce — Midlothian businesses have access to 3,513,981 available workforce in a 45-minute radius.
These are just a few of the stats that make Midlothian a manufacturer haven. As the industry continues to experience new shifts in workforce and resources, consider if your business has settled in the prime location.