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Jobs Outlook: Millwrights




Employment of millwrights is projected to grow more slowly than average for all occupations through the year 2014. Because millwrights will always be needed to maintain and repair existing machinery, dismantle old machinery, and install new equipment, skilled applicants should have good job opportunities. Prospects will be best for millwrights with training in installing newer production technologies. In addition to employment growth, many job openings for these workers will stem from the need to replace experienced millwrights who transfer to other occupations or retire.

Employment of millwrights has historically been cyclical, rising and falling in line with investments in automation in the Nationís factories and production facilities. To remain competitive in coming years, firms will continue to require the services of millwrights to dismantle old equipment and install new high-technology machinery. Additionally, as the services sector of the economy grows, there is an increasing number of companies in this sector employing new technology to make them more efficient, which will likely offset the loss of manufacturing work. Warehouse and distribution companies, for example, are deploying highly automated conveyor systems which are being maintained by millwrights. Employment growth from new automation will be dampened somewhat by foreign competition and the introduction of new technologies, such as hydraulic torque wrenches, ultrasonic measuring tools, and laser shaft alignment, which allow fewer millwrights to perform more work. In addition, the demand for millwrights may be adversely affected as lower paid workers, such as electronics technicians and industrial machinery mechanics and maintenance workers, assume some installation and maintenance duties.