The manufacturing industry is constantly evolving. As technology grows and advances, so does the skillset of the industry’s workforce. And while technology has forced manufacturing employees to relearn variations of the processes they’ve become accustomed to, automation has also allowed factory workers a level of freedom that’s never before been experienced in the industry.

Supply Chain
IMPACT – Supply Chain

Misconceptions about working in manufacturing are rampant. The idea of a career in the industry, at least for some job seekers, is steeped in outdated information and inaccurate misconceptions of bygone eras.

So, what’s the truth about starting a career in manufacturing in the year 2020 and beyond?

Is there opportunity for career advancement?
Does a work-life balance actually exist?

Here’s the truth about working in manufacturing…

Career Advancement: No one wants to find themselves 5 years into a career just to discover their path has reached a dead end. In fact, according to a poll conducted by, “76% of employees prioritize opportunities for career growth,” when searching for a new position. While this may not come as much of a surprise, the simple fact is that many jobs in various industries simply don’t offer upward mobility.

Candidates that show initiative, willing to work collaboratively and eager to learn – will excel to opportunities for advancement.

In the manufacturing industry, the statistics tell much of the story in regards to personal and professional growth. The average entry level position begins with an hourly wage of approximately $18.50.

Within the Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium umbrella the variety of training, apprenticeship and leadership programs offered in the field, such as the Advanced Manufacturing Training Expansion Program (AMTEP), the opportunity to gain more responsibility is always within reach.

NAMC map
Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium

Work/Life Balance: No matter how much we all enjoy our jobs, a healthy work-life balance is essential to our overall quality of life. Whether we have family’s waiting for us at home, or interests and passions we want to pursue, spending a disproportionate amount of time at work can drain us of the energy needed to lead complete, fulfilling lives.

work life

According to a research study conducted by doctorate students at Kansas State University on the differences between white-collar and blue-collar careers, “more blue- collar workers than expected have access to (flexible) schedules, resulting in improved satisfaction with work-family balance.” These findings highlight a new ideology that is taking hold of the manufacturing industry; work hard, get the job done right, and enjoy your life outside of the facility.

Training & Education: Entry level positions in manufacturing are available in surprisingly high numbers, in part due to a boom in the industry over the last few years, and in part due to an aging workforce. While there isn’t a universal amount of education required for job seekers to begin a career in the field, having a strong knowledge of the systems, processes and procedures on the factory floor can put you a giant step closer to achieving your goals.

  • Hours of Technical Training with Advanced Educators
  • Between 300-415 hours of technical training hosted numerous supporting vocational schools and facilities throughout the Northeast.

The Northeast Advanced Manufacturing Consortium (NAMC) started as an initiative among four workforce investment board directors to form a partnership among industry, academia, and workforce development established to promote manufacturing within the Northeast of Massachusetts. NAMC works to develop the regional workforce pipeline that will provide the skilled employees necessary for advanced manufacturing to remain globally competitive, long into the future. To this end, the consortium leverages a wealth of local, state, and national resources gained support for manufacturing within the Northeast of Massachusetts.

Learn More About NAMC:

Umbrellaed under the NAMC –The Advanced Manufacturing Training Expansion Program, (AMTEP) which we alluded to in an earlier paragraph, is designed to help train potential manufacturing employees in order to equip them with the tools and skills necessary to begin a rewarding career in the industry. No experience is required to sign up for the courses, just a willingness to learn and a desire to take control of your career path.

Participate in Specialized Trainings and Apprenticeships

Network with Manufacturing Companies

Today, manufacturing is not the same field that your grandfather may have known. With legitimate opportunities for career advancement, a healthy balance between work and life, and higher-than-ever earning potential, these jobs have become the most efficient route to take in order to achieve the American dream.

(Courtesy of NAMC/AMTEP Partnership)

Shawsheen Tech Welding Class Graduation

hiring event
Hiring Event – Winchester Interconnect meeting w/NAMC graduates