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How To Change Misconceptions About Working in Manufacturing With Your Employer Brand

Learn how to dispel common candidate misconceptions about working in manufacturing by using certain messaging points from your employer brand. These messaging points include emphasizing workplace safety, highlighting opportunities for growth and advancement and showcasing your company's commitment to sustainability.

Your job title may be “talent acquisition,” but the truth is, you’re a matchmaker. You’re looking for candidates who will fit well with your job openings and be excited about working with your company. Unfortunately, TA teams can find themselves fighting an uphill battle with potential recruits due to outdated perceptions about manufacturing work. 

For example, some candidates may wrongly believe that manufacturing facilities are dangerous and that manufacturing workers are stuck in dead-end jobs because they lack the qualifications for other positions. That couldn’t be further from the truth. According to a 2020 study conducted (in part) by the Manufacturing Institute, 83% of manufacturing workers were satisfied with their jobs

But enduring misconceptions about working in manufacturing can make it challenging to source qualified candidates. TA teams are in the ideal position to help educate candidates about what a career in manufacturing is really like. Let’s explore a few messaging points that TA teams can keep in their back pockets when speaking with candidates about the benefits of working in manufacturing.

3 Employer Branding Messages to Correct Outdated Beliefs About Manufacturing Work

TA teams can start to correct common misconceptions about manufacturing work by incorporating these three messages into their employer brand.

1. Manufacturing jobs are safe. 

Nobody wants to get hurt on the job. Workplace safety is critical to manufacturing companies, which is why they emphasize safety considerations

Let applicants know about the extra precautions you take to minimize safety risks to your employees. Those may include extensive training, equipment usage policies and regular safety reviews. Share specific details about safety precautions along with injury or incident statistics to show potential candidates how serious you are about their long-term health and safety.

2. Manufacturing work provides opportunities for growth and advancement. 

Many people are stuck in the past when it comes to their perceptions of manufacturing work. They think factory floor workers are mindless cogs, stuck on an assembly line with no way to learn new skills or advance in their careers. 

That may have been the case 80 years ago, but it isn’t remotely true today. Manufacturing work requires both technical skill and technological acumen—and there’s no end to what workers can learn. Whether it’s mastering a new line of machinery, programming robotics equipment or learning a new coding language to control automation technology, manufacturing workers have countless opportunities to grow within their roles and advance up the career ladder.

Don’t let people think a posting for an entry-level position with your company will be a career dead end. Discuss your training or growth programs along with your commitment to providing advancement opportunities whenever you talk about your company or your open positions. 

3. The manufacturing industry cares about sustainability. 

According to a recent IBM survey, over two-thirds of respondents would be more willing to apply for (67%) or accept (68%) a job at a company that cared about sustainability. If you want like-minded candidates to apply for your positions, make sure they know where you stand on issues like sustainability and environmental protection. 

It’s worth noting that the industry as a whole is moving toward sustainability. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “A growing number of [manufacturing] companies are treating ‘sustainability’ as an important objective in their strategy and operations to increase growth and global competitiveness.” 

If your company is among them, be loud and proud about it. Share information about your company’s environmental stance in your job postings and elsewhere. Incorporate statistics measuring your progress and specific examples of sustainability initiatives wherever possible to boost your credibility.

Accelerate Your Recruiting With FactoryFix

Once you’ve crafted an employer brand that helps dispel common misconceptions about working in manufacturing, FactoryFix can help you get the word out about it with our one-stop job-sourcing engine. We’ll share your postings with our network of more than 700,000 manufacturing professionals and distribute your listings to both general interest and manufacturing-specific job boards. That means your jobs will be seen by tried-and-true industry pros who already understand the benefits of working in manufacturing as well as newcomers who are interested in learning more.

Once you’ve started getting applications, FactoryFix can help you focus on the top-tier candidates who have the qualifications you need. Our automated screening tool lets you skip the screening call by identifying which applicants are the best fit based on the custom questions you’ve set up. We’ll also help you keep candidates engaged so they know you’re into them too.

Don’t suffer through the discouragement of being turned down by promising candidates just because they have outdated notions about working in manufacturing. By integrating these messages into your employer brand, you can start changing candidates’ perceptions about working in manufacturing—and get them excited about working for you.