Don’t miss this week’s edition of Time Magazine. The April 22, 2013 issue has “Made In The USA, Manufacturing is Back-But Where Are The Jobs”, article by Rana Foroohar & Bill Saporito.
Richard Stengel, Time’s Managing Editor introduces this edition with “Made In America, Again”.
There is a manufacturing renaissance going on in America. That’s the good news. The less than stellar news is that it will not necessarily translate into a jobs renaissance. Yes, manufacturing has been going up for the past three years, creating a half-million new jobs. But the reason manufacturing is on the rise has to do with cutting-edge techniques that translate into more machines and fewer workers. Those workers, moreover, need to be better educated and more highly skilled. Those jobs are more desirable and secure than earlier manufacturing work, but there will be much more competition over a smaller number of them. Our cover story by Curious Capitalist columnist Rana Foroohar and assistant managing editor Bill Saporito explores the revolution in high-tech manufacturing that is allowing American factories to overcome the competition of cheaper labor abroad. Another factor in the manufacturing uptick is the shale boom in the U.S. which is decreasing energy costs here at home. Bill, who worked in factories as a teenager, and Rana, whose father was a plant manager in Indiana, visited a battery factory in Schenectady, N.Y., and were impressed not only with how clean and high-tech it was but also by its lean workforce. “It was a far cry,” Rana says, “from the gritty component lines with thousands of unionized workers doing hand assembly that my dad used to manage in Indiana.”