5 ways manufacturers are major game-changers in Dayton

Manufacturing employment in the Dayton area has slowly but steadily grown since the Great Recession low point of June 2009, almost nine years ago.

Manufacturing just in Montgomery, Greene and Miami counties — considered the Dayton metropolitan statistical area by the federal government — has grown from 35,300 workers in June 2009 to nearly 43,000 workers in April 2018, according to Federal Reserve data. And many jobs are going unfilled.

Here are five ways Dayton industry is changing the region:

Companies are drawn to the Dayton area and Southwestern Ohio by low costs, the confluence of interstates 70 and 75, and being only a day's drive away from 70 percent of the nation's manufacturing capacity — companies representing automotive assembly, advanced manufacturing, plastics and more. READ MORE 

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2. Local manufacturers are focused on the future

An array of local companies are focused on materials science, including at least one university institution, the University of Dayton Research Institute.

Global Graphene Group — also known as “G3” — is the Dayton-based holding company for Angstron Materials, Honeycomb Battery and Nanotek Instruments. Together with a new division, Angstron Energy Co., the companies work on commercializing uses for its material called “graphene.”

In particular, global companies are exploring how graphene may prevent cell phone battery fires. READ MORE

3. Dayton manufacturers are starting to pay more

Manufacturing once was a surefire path to a middle-class life, even for workers without college degrees. That path in some ways is less certain today due to automation, global trade, weakening unions and more.

But manufacturing still yields a pay “premium” compared to other industries that draw from the same pool of workers — retail, restaurants and hospitality — and starting pay in the region has increased in recent years.

"It's true," said Steve Staub, co-owner of Staub's Manufacturing Solutions in Harrison Twp. "We pay more than we used to." READ MORE 

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4. Manufacturers are in hiring mode. 

Not all manufacturing lost jobs have come back, but a lot of them have and companies like Rack Processing in Moraine say they no longer have a shortage of jobs. They have a shortage of qualified workers.

The need is acutely felt and widespread: The Dayton area and West Central Ohio are home to about 2,500 manufacturers trying to fill some 3,400 new positions every year, said Jon Foley, a trustee of the Dayton Region Manufacturers Association, which has members in 14 counties. READ MORE 

Explore5. Manufacturers are strengthening job growth overall

Nationally and in Ohio, the growth of industry is making itself felt. READ MORE

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