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5 best-paying jobs in the manufacturing industry

Looking for higher wages and better living standards? These manufacturing jobs may be your answer.

5 best-paying jobs in the manufacturing industry

Manufacturers in the U.S. are the most productive in the world, reports the National Association of Manufacturers, far surpassing the worker productivity of any other major manufacturing economy, leading to higher wages and living standards. 

Taken alone, manufacturing in the U.S. would be the ninth-largest economy in the world. 

Here are five of the best-paying jobs in the manufacturing industry. 

Information Technology Manager | Median Annual Salary: $80,772

Salary outlook: IT managers supervise, hire and train IT department employees and research and evaluate new technologies to enhance or upgrade existing servers, networks and other IT infrastructure equipment. IT managers understand mathematical computer languages and are problem solvers. This job usually requires a master's degree in computer science of information technology, but it is possible to work your way up with a bachelor's degree. IT managers can make an impressive salary at Verizon, which pays nearly $140K, on average. San Francisco pays 34 percent above the national average of $78,964 for this role, followed by Washington (29 percent) and Boston (22 percent).  

Browse manufacturing information technology manager jobs

Operations Manager | Median Annual Salary: $70,056

Salary outlook: Operations managers monitor and manage operational costs and handle decisions on hiring, compensation, promotions, discipline and termination of operational support staff, in addition to managing day-to-day company or department operations. High job satisfaction is associate with this role. Companies like UPS offer some of the best salaries, nearing $110K on average. San Francisco and Houston pay their operations managers at least 15 percent above the national average of $59,882. 

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Human Resources Manager | Median Annual Salary: $66,003

Salary outlook: HR managers support the company's growth and operation by overseeing daily operations, business planning and budget development for human resources programs. Responsibilities include planning, managing and coordinating all human resources initiatives, recruitment, compensation, benefits, training and employee relations. High-paying skills include performance management and organizational development. San Francisco, New York and Washington are your best bet for increased wages with all paying more than 20 percent above the national average of $59,970. 

Browse manufacturing human resources manager jobs

Mechanical Engineer | Median Annual Salary: $61,733

Salary outlook: Mechanical engineers perform engineering duties and develop, design and test mechanical devices as part of the planning and manufacturing of products. This job requires a bachelor of science in mechanical engineering, a master of science in engineering or a related degree. Certifications, such as the EIT exam, may be required for employment. General Dynamics Electric Boat is one of the top-paying companies, offering more than $80K, followed by Schlumberger and Ford Motor Company. Mechanical engineers can see the biggest salary boost in Houston and San Francisco, which pay at least 13 percent above the national average of $65,595. 

Browse manufacturing mechanical engineer jobs.

Human Resources Generalist | Median Annual Salary: $48,827

Salary outlook: HR generalists oversee day-to-day human resources tasks and usually repot to an HR manager or director. Often, this role is required to have a college degree and work experience in business, communications, management or a related field. HR generalists administer employee compensation, training and benefit programs and process, verify and maintain HR documents related to staffing, training and performance evaluations. Job seekers can browse openings in San Francisco and New York where the pay is more than 20 percent above the national average of $47,778. 

Browse manufacturing human resources generalist jobs

Note: Data is based on PayScale survey data. 


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