The many sides of manufacturing's struggles
While jobs disappear or get relocated, other plants are springing up in new places
The loss of manufacturing jobs in many parts of the country have had a profound impact on workers, and the effects of those job cuts have been felt in every segment of the industry. As the workforce development issue gains attention, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that some employers have had to lay off high school students from a highly-successful work program that gave students experience and training for a future in manufacturing.
Even so, as some, Caterpillar has broken ground on a new motor plant in the town of Seguin, outside of Austin, TX. The arrival of the Cat plant, said the mayor of the town of 23,000, is “one of the most important events in the 170-year history of the City of Seguin.”
Caterpillar will consolidate and relocate its assembly, paint and testing operations from Illinois and South Carolina to Seguin. The facility will provide engines for Caterpillar machines and electric power generation, as well as petroleum, marine, and industrial customers.
And this occurs even as Caterpillar prepares for the indefinite closure of another facility in Mossville, IL.
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Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey