Demand for skilled workers is at an all-time high for manufacturing companies located on the Central Coast. Businesses based here have experienced growth over the last few years and are now looking to expand their workforce.
“The manufacturing industry here is not only growing but booming,” said Anthony Cash, Manufacturing Lead at ES Aero. “Our business has doubled over the last year and a half.”
In order to plug the hiring gap, several local businesses have partnered with local non-profit SLO Partners to run an additional Precision Manufacturing bootcamp this fall to provide residents with the skills needed to secure jobs currently in demand.
Companies in the space currently have numerous job openings and say they can’t hire fast enough.
“We have a range of positions open, including research and development, tech roles, bioinformatics and aromatics as these groups are growing,” said Colleen Bunch, Director of Human Resources at Central Coast Agriculture. “We also have mechanical, electrical and chemical roles along with engineers as they provide support throughout the organization. We’ve experienced a fair amount of growth in the last 18 months so it’s been crucial to find people that live here with the right technical skills.”
The Central Coast has become a hot-spot for manufacturing companies as the region has proved advantageous for companies based here.
“Being located between two metro areas is beneficial when it comes to supply chain and workforce needs,” said Jocelyn Brennan, President and CEO of South County Chambers of Commerce. “Having clients in close proximity is also an advantage. A lot of people move here for the quality of life and once their businesses are established they want to stay.”
“Being on the Central Coast has given us exposure to a lot of ‘green forward’ electric projects, such as the NASA x57 all-electric ‘X plane’, which has developed our skill-set in this field,” added Cash. “Our business has grown as more clients have seen we have the knowledge and experience in these types of technologies. This is the direction the manufacturing industry is headed and we’re at the very center of it.”
The Precision Manufacturing bootcamp starts October 12 and is six weeks long. Course fees are $249. The cities of Arroyo Grande and Grover Beach are offering scholarships to people who live or work in Arroyo Grande or Grover Beach.
“It’s a career that’s interesting for people who want to make something with their hands and be on the cutting-edge of technology,” continued Brennan. “There aren’t a lot of barriers to entry which makes it accessible to people who want to make a career transition into the space. You don’t necessarily have to have a four-year degree but you can make a good wage.”