In a post on Friday on the May jobs report, I wrote: “In the area durable manufacturing, jobs in the auto industry (“Motor Vehicles and Parts”) increased by 2,400 in May and by 26,300 over the last year, which is an annual employment increase of 3.4% and more than twice the overall growth of 1.6% for all US payrolls over that period. US automakers have been hiring at a pace of more than 100 new workers every day over the last year.”
In a related article, “American auto industry about to go on hiring spree, plans expansion to meet rising demand,” the Associated Press is reporting today that:
The auto industry is about to go on a hiring spree as car makers and parts suppliers race to find engineers, technicians and factory workers to build the next generation of vehicles. The new employees will be part of a larger, busier workforce. From coast to coast, the industry is in top gear. Factories are operating at about 95 percent of capacity, and many are already running three shifts. As a result, some auto and parts companies are doing something they’ve been reluctant to consider since the recession: Adding floor space and spending millions of dollars on new equipment.
The auto industry’s stepped-up hiring will help sustain the nation’s job growth and help fuel consumer spending. The auto industry’s outlook is bright. Vehicle sales for 2013 could reach 15.5 million, the highest in six years. To meet that demand, automakers must find more people. Hundreds of companies that make parts for automakers have to hire, too, just to keep up.
Among the hiring planned for this year:
- Chrysler will add more than 3,500 workers this year at factories in Indiana, Ohio and Michigan to make transmissions and to build Jeeps and Ram pickups.
- Ford expects to hire 2,200 salaried workers in information technology, product development and manufacturing. Plus the company is hiring 1,400 factory workers and recalling another 2,000 laid-off employees, in Michigan and Missouri.
- GM is hiring 4,000 engineers and computer professionals at four technical centers in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan and Texas to develop software and other innovations.
- Honda is adding at least 500 jobs this year at factories in Ohio, Indiana and Alabama as it moves more production to North America.
- At TRW Automotive, recruiters are looking for 50 engineers in the Detroit area to work on new safety features such as a system that warns drivers when large animals are in their path.