Five Future Jobs That Could Shape Manufacturing in America
Matthew Greenwood posted on May 31, 2019 |

The future of manufacturing is digital.

That’s a key finding of a ManpowerGroup and DMDII report that addresses the state of the manufacturing workforce in the United States. “We see a highly connected and cross-discipline digitally enabling and digitally opportunistic community of work roles that bring together many disciplines,” says the report

The “Partners in Connection: The Digital Workforce Succession in Manufacturing” report highlights 165 roles that will be at the forefront of integrating digital technologies into legacy manufacturing processes. Here are five pivotal jobs that will not only be in high demand—they’ll also play a big part in shaping the manufacturing world for years to come.

Chief Digital Officer

The CDO is the big-picture thinker charged with creating the company’s vision for digital manufacturing and overseeing its implementation. “The CDO is the current ‘it’ executive (the go-to digitalization guru) and should be a widely known and accessible leader,” according to the report.

Digital Thread Engineer

Digital manufacturing means lots of data. The Digital Thread Engineer is responsible for the development and deployment of a product’s or process’ digital thread, finding ways to connect, collect, repurpose and track product and process data across the manufacturing cycle.

Manufacturing Cybersecurity Strategist

Lots of data means an increasing demand for a specialist that can keep assets and data safe. The Manufacturing Cybersecurity Strategist assesses and manages risk across the company, and determines strategies and actions to protect the connected factory, digital thread and IoT-enabled devices—while protecting data privacy and intellectual property.

Machine Learning Specialist

Digital manufacturing is leading to more complex and data-driven operations—and to an increased need for experts to capture and analyze massive amounts of data. The Machine Learning Specialist takes AI technologies from the lab to the manufacturing floor, designing data-driven products and processes.

Collaborative Robotics Specialist

This specialist is tasked with making it possible for robots and humans to work side by side. The robotics engineer trains robots and people alike to work efficiently, collaboratively and safely together—using data connectivity, integrative collaborative systems, and human-robot interfaces.

The U.S. manufacturing industry is expected to generate 3.4 million jobs over the next decade—but a widening skills gap will leave over 2 million unfilled. Jobs like the ones listed above represent “opportunities for manufacturers and the workforce alike, and represent targets for educators and workforce development programs.”

Want to find out what opportunities are available for you? Check out the Engineering.com job board.

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