Martin County has Manufacturing Jobs

Thursday, December 27, 2018

The manufacturing sector has been steadily recovering from the Great Recession. In the next decade, the Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte estimate that 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled, due to a combination of industry growth and Baby Boomers retiring.

CHCSome of the higher demand and higher paying jobs in Martin County, Minnesota are in manufacturing, according to Connie Hines of the Department of Employment and Economic Development and CareerForce.

If someone is new to the area, the local CareerForce Center serves as a resource, matching employees with job leads from its network of growing companies, according to Hines. It also helps job seekers find opportunities, craft resumes and navigate online applications.

“We tend to steer people in the direction of jobs that are in demand with better wages, such as manufacturing,” says Hines.

ValeroIn order to attract workers, some area manufacturers are offering 10-hour, four-day weeks or other flexible scheduling options as an incentive. Companies are also offering immediate benefits as a perk, instead of the typical 90-day or more waiting period.

Positions are available for entry level workers as well as those with vocational training. There are also jobs for those with professional degrees in areas such as engineering, marketing and accounting. Hines notes that it’s becoming more common for young people to move back to Fairmont after attending college due to Fairmont’s great job opportunities, affordability and quality of life.

There’s a diverse range of manufacturing happening in the area, from ethanol production to food processing and ag manufacturing. Fairmont Foods, Zierke Built, Avery Weigh-Tronix and Devenish are just a few of the companies that are growing and hiring.

Fairmont Foods, acquired by Downs Foods in 2017, recently completed a multimillion dollar expansion that more than doubled its production capacity. The company has more than doubled its workforce in the last few years and more growth is projected for the company, which produces frozen foods. Hines notes that the company typically has jobs available for entry level and skilled professional workers in areas such as production and quality control.

Zierke Built Manufacturing moved from Winnebago to Fairmont last year in order to expand, bringing about 40 jobs to the city. It’s expected to add an additional 30 jobs over the next three years. Hines says Zierke regularly has openings for welders, assemblers, machinists, painters and metal fabricators. Because welders are especially in demand, Zierke Built will even provide training.

AveryAvery Weigh-Tronix, an international company that designs and produces industrial scales, has been hiring for positions in assembly, shipping/receiving, welding and metal fabrication. It also offers some on the job training, according to Hines.

Devenish, which manufactures animal feed, has production jobs as well as research and development positions for those with degrees in areas such as animal science.

Continued improvements in on-the-job training possibilities and affordable training options such as Fairmont High School’s Welding Academy are essential, as they will help ensure skilled manufacturing workers into the future and, in turn, help fuel local economic growth.

“Businesses in Fairmont are generally doing well and feel confident in the economy,” says Linsey Preuss, Fairmont’s economic development coordinator. “But I often hear from employers that they could grow if they had more workers.”

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