As we all start thinking towards the glorious three day weekend to celebrate the hard work of all Americans this Labor Day, I wanted to share the results of our survey we did right before Independence Day earlier this year in our post titled “The Importance of Manufacturing in America.” In that post, the survey asked the simple questions of “Why is American Manufacturing important to you and why is it important to the economy?” We had some of the brightest minds around manufacturing weigh in and give their thoughts, which you can read below. We are sure their answers will reinvigorate you just like manufacturing is doing to the economy at present, with the newly released statistics that the economy grew even more than expected in the second quarter by 4.2%, mostly driven by gains in manufacturing. In fact, the Markit Flash PMI for August predicts that we will see the ISM’s Purchasing Manager’s Index rise to the highest levels we’ve seen since April 2011, with an expected reading of 58.0. That’s some serious momentum!
Furthermore, if you do just a quick search of the phrase “US Manufacturing” you can clearly see the number of news stories is high but also the amount of positive stories are high. Here are just a quick few I found with a quick search today:
- Executive Perspectives: The State of US Manufacturing Today
- US MANUFACTURING SURGES IN JULY
- KPMG’s John Veihmeyer On The Resurgence Of American Manufacturing, Efficient Growth And Staying Relevant
- U-M report: How shale gas can boost U.S. manufacturing
You Could Say We, Like Most in the Industry, Have a Love Affair with Manufacturing
In fact, we too have written at length on the state of manufacturing and best practices for manufacturing. Why is a third party logistics company talking about manufacturing, you ask? It’s because, like manufacturers ourselves, we view manufacturing as vital to the economy. However, if manufacturers are not efficient and cost effective in one of the highest cost areas for their business, transportation, then it’s tough to scale and sustain to contribute to the economy. We help manufacturers with transportation management so they can focus on their core and not lose money out the back door as growth comes in the front. Here are just a few of the latest manufacturing posts we’ve written in the last few months:
- 6 Ways to Lower Your Manufacturing Costs to Gain a Competitive Edge
- [White Paper] Manufacturing is Back…and the Future of Manufacturing
- US Manufacturing Growth Contributing Factors: 14th Month of Expansion, ISM At Highest Levels Since 2011
- 6 areas of Focus to Achieve Real Innovation in Manufacturing
Fast Facts around American Manufacturing
We absolutely love that National Association Manufacturers and all they do as the voice and yeoman industry for American Manufacturing. They have a great report about the “Facts of Manufacturing” you should read if you are in love with manufacturing as much as we are. They also have these great quick facts about the prowess of American Manufacturing:
- In 2013, manufacturers contributed $2.08 trillion to the economy, up from $2.03 trillion in 2012. This was 12.5 percent of GDP. For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.32 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector.
- Manufacturing supports an estimated 17.4 million jobs in the United States—about one in six private-sector jobs. More than 12 million Americans (or 9 percent of the workforce) are employed directly in manufacturing.
- In 2013, the average manufacturing worker in the United States earned $77,506 annually, including pay and benefits. The average worker in all industries earned $62,546.
- Manufacturers in the United States are the most productive in the world, far surpassing the worker productivity of any other major manufacturing economy, leading to higher wages and living standards.
- Manufacturers in the United States perform two-thirds of all private-sector R&D in the nation, driving more innovation than any other sector.
- Taken alone, manufacturing in the United States would be the 8th largest economy in the world.
Clearly, American Manufacturing does a great deal for the economy. Now, before we give you the words of the pros and what manufacturing means to them, we also highly encourage you to read the “Made In Dayton” Blog’s most recent post. It’s a great reminder about the “multiplier-effect” manufacturing has on the other parts of the economy. Simply put, the multiplier effect, as greatly said by GE CEO Jeffery Immelt means:
“You’re going to have fewer people that do any task. In the end, it makes the system more productive and more competitive. But when you walk through Mississippi, for every person that was in that plant, there are probably seven or eight jobs in the supply chain.”
Manufacturing Industry Pros Share their Thoughts on The Importance of Manufacturing to the Economy
And without any further ado, here are the great answer of some of the survey participants from our “Why is American Manufacturing Important to you” survey. The first sentence/answer covers why manufacturing is important to them and the second sentence/answer is why do you think manufacturing is important to the economy.
- ‘It is what the economy of this country was built on and it continues to be a critical leg of the US ability to compete globally. Manufacturing doesn’t just employ the workers who do the actual production of products it’s projected that for every one manufacturing job created there are anywhere from three to six additional jobs created.’ – Rebekah Hutton, VP, MSSC
- ‘I own a manufacturing company located in California and employ 25 + people who spend what they earn here in the USA right here in the USA. Outsourcing manufacturing has nearly killed the US economy as well as the number of high paying jobs and this needs to be fixed. Only when the American consumer assumes the responsibility for buying goods that are manufactured in America will we see the US economy really improve. Don’t be fooled by the Fortune 50 companies that call themselves American companies yet outsource all of their work to contract manufacturers overseas. These companies do not provide jobs to Americans and are the cause of the problems we are facing now.’ – Bill Schwerter, VP sales, CCMP, inc.
- ‘Manufacturing is the “place” where projects, innovations get materialized. It is the achievement of a long process of projetc management and studies and the moment of truth into industrial reality. Manufacturing creates the real value in pur world, both to the companies and for the employees. COmpared to the finance world wich is virtual, based majorly on speculation, and tend to shrink wellness or concentrating it.’ – SAMI BENDHIAF, Head of Project Managers, bioMerieux
- ‘Adding value to natural resources and raw material is important to me.
- Making, creating and building is important to my sense of self worth. True value is added and created in the industries of Agriculture, Mining/Drilling and Manufacturing.’ – JT Rickenbach, President, WESTROM, LLC
- ‘Manufacturing is important to me because I believe the last 20 or so years have proven how important it is to the US economy and jobs. The ups and downs of the last 20+ years have shown that the US can’t be a country that merely consumes; we have to create, too. Manufacturing is integral to the economy because, as mentioned previously, not only can’t the US be a country that merely consumes, but also we can’t be a nation that merely creates ideas. We need to create tangible or usable products, be they software or physical parts, that we can sell to grow the economy.’ – Heather Cunningham, Webmaster, Globe Composite Solutions
- ‘I like being apart of a process that provides something that people can enjoy for a long time. The ability to make things that you need and are important to your way of life is extremely important for progress and self-reliance. ‘ – Terrence Johnson, Plant Engineer, Shaw Industries, INC
- ‘I have been involved in manufacturing for over 20 years in various forms, including assembly team member, trainer, management right through to my role as a Lean specialist. I fully understand the strength manufacturing has around the world and the impact on the economy worlwide. Manufacturing is very diverse and there are vast opportunities for business growth and personal learning. For me, manufacturing keeps the innovation moving. Manufacturing is vital to any economy. It is one of the largest sectors that exports which is critical to continually building modern economies. Most manufacturers are aware of the need to search for new growth opportunities, whether for new products and services or the investment in their people, to continually improve and stay competitive. The manufacturing sector is the main force in most countries, and has the highest percentage of trade. Quite simply, without manufacturing, the economy everywhere would have a significant downturn. ‘ – Peter Holmes, Lean Manufacturing Specialist, Core Business Solutions
- ‘Modern manufacturing promotes the acquisition of a broad range of personal skills. The process if converting a liquid asset (cash) to a physical asset that can produce additional assets over time is the basis for creating sustained wealth in an economy.’ – Frank Viola, Assistant Controller, Cardone Industries
- ‘Manufacturing is the engine that drove the USA out of the great depression. Manufacturing must be the back bone of our countries economy and our products need to be viewed as the best money can buy. Job growth’ – Mike Lynch, Director of Technical Services, CPI Card Group
- ‘It has provided me with a varied and interesting career for over 40 years and has allowed me to provide well for my family. If we are to maintain the balance of trade in Canada to a sustainable level, we MUST encourage a strong manufacturing base. We can’t totally depend on export of natural resources while purchasing all of our clothing and equipment from offshore. ‘ – Bob Bloomer, Manufacturing Operations Manager, Corrosion Service Company Ltd.
- ‘Manufacturing offers continuously growing career paths for America’s youth. Manufacturing jobs pay well, have good benefits and offer educational development. Manufacturing continuously improves quality and processes through research and development in technology, logistics and financial systems. In so doing manufacturing provides financial, technological and military security. ‘ – Dave DeWitt, CEO, Phase65, Inc.
- ‘I worked for 30+ years in the semiconductor industry. During that time, I saw virtually all semi mfg go overseas. With it went the expertise needed to do the mfg. Having our own mfg capabilities, regardless of the product, makes us less dependent on others, provides jobs, encourages education, and, gives us more stability as an economy. In the simplest of terms, jobs and more jobs.’ – Beverly Thompson, Principal Consultant, SCC Sequoia
- ‘It has been an outlet for my creative energies for many years, and has provided me and my family a level of financial security that our parents were not able to achieve. I consider manufacturing to be the second most important enabler for any society, right behind agriculture. Manufacturing is the common denominator behind all valuable endeavors in that it provides the means and tools for all other activities. ‘ – Bill Fogel, Manufacturing Unit Manager, Johnson & Johnson
- ‘It creates real wealth for a country. It drives innovation and creative thinking It builds pride in people and the Nation especially when the products are recognized globally. It drives the tax revenue wheel. Taxes are paid by companies and the people employed. It brings money into the economy through exports. It raises the skill level of its people. ‘ – John Coughlan, Director Manufacturing, TATA
- ‘My family has been in manufacturing for 3 generations, Grandpa and Dad at Singer Sewing Machine and I primarily at GF AgieCharmilles. We all had rewarding careers and believe we contributed to our society. Manufacturing is the key to achieving balanced trade and budget deficits,economic growth, income equality, low unemployment, strong defense and innovation. All of the schemes to increase demand or increase construction or infrastructure eventually fail without manufacturing to pay the bills, generate secondary activity and provide underlying demand.’ – Harry Moser, Founder and President, Reshoring Initiative
- ‘If have made a fascinating career out of new product development and the introduction to manufacturing. At least, it fascinates me. Looking back, I enjoyed assembling models of airplanes, cars and ships as a kid. I realize now how much this hobby resembles what I’m doing today for Amazon, assembling smartphones and consumer electronics. It amazes me to see a high volume production line that I helped put together running at capacity today, especially when I remember how messy it was during the engineering and development phase. The whole project was a huge challenge from beginning to end, with loads of problems to solve. Now I derive a great deal of satisfaction from going through all those experiences. On to the next project! Manufacturing creates value. It produces goods that customers need or want, to improve their quality of their lives. Because manufacturing creates value, any economy which takes part in it will also increase in value. If the economy grows, everyone who is a part of that economy benefits. Not only does the manufacturing management benefit, but also the workers and the suppliers of goods and services. Manufacturing has a multiplier effect. It’s easy to see the importance of manufacturing when, over the past 30 years, manufacturing jobs have gradually moved to other parts of the globe from the US. This trend has had a negative impact on the US, but a positive impact elsewhere. I travel to China quite a bit and it’s amazing to see the new cars on the road, skyscrapers going up, and a general hustle and bustle in the eastern cities.’ – Mat Waltrip, Principal Operations Program Manager, Amazon Lab126
- ‘A strong manufacturing sector provides growth and opportunity for future generations. We need to be able to leave our children a stable and sustainable economy. Historically, manufacturing was the backbone of our country and contributed to a growing middle class. For our economy to grow and flourish, we need to make and sell products to the world. We have witnessed the pitfalls of moving towards a service based economy and can’t afford to trade off low wage jobs for the opportunity that highly skilled manufacturing jobs add to our economic stability.’ – Paula Hynes, Communications Coordinator, The Rodon Group
- ‘Manufacturing is the means that feeds my family. In the trade for thirty plus years and it’s still all I want to do. I find manufacturing very rewarding both personally and monetarily. Manufacturing produces a tangible product and employs people. Manufacturing builds communities in many ways.’ – Joe McCulloch, Machinist, Baylor University
Why is Manufacturing Important to You and the Economy? Let us know in the Comments below and Happy Labor Day everyone! May you rest but remember why we all work so hard!