There are currently an estimated 145,400 metal workers in the United States. The metal worker job market is expected to shrink by -15.0% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are metal workers?

CareerExplorer rates metal workers with a F employability rating, meaning this career should provide poor employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will lose -14,200 metal workers. That number is based on the retirement of 7,600 existing metal workers.

Are metal workers in demand?

Demand and employment opportunities for metal workers are in decline. The principal reasons for this are technological advances and foreign competition. Labor-saving machinery, especially computer numerically controlled (CNC) machine tools and robots, is improving output quality and reducing production costs. This, in turn, is decreasing the levels of required manpower. The demand for metal workers is also directly affected by the demand for the parts they produce. As the manufacturing industries in both the United States and Canada face competition from abroad, the number of orders for parts made domestically is falling. In addition, some American and Canadian manufacturers have relocated their production facilities overseas, dramatically diminishing employment in North America. There is currently a drive to repatriate some exported jobs, which, if successful, could improve prospects for aspiring metal workers. Job seekers who are able to operate CNC machines and have an extensive background in machine operations will likely be the most sought-after candidates.

What’s the supply of metal workers?

The metal worker industry is concentrated in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana

Metal Worker job market by state

State Name Employed Metal Workers
Ohio 16,220
Michigan 15,000
Indiana 14,670
Wisconsin 9,260
California 8,630
Texas 8,250
North Carolina 7,610
Pennsylvania 5,760
Illinois 5,120
Missouri 4,940
Georgia 4,200
Alabama 3,960
Tennessee 3,590
Florida 3,450
Minnesota 3,070
New York 3,060
Kentucky 2,790
Iowa 2,760
Virginia 2,600
Washington 2,590
South Carolina 2,430
Massachusetts 2,110
Arkansas 2,110
Utah 2,000
Connecticut 1,640
Puerto Rico 1,610
Oregon 1,230
New Hampshire 1,180
Arizona 1,100
Oklahoma 1,010
Kansas 1,000
Mississippi 850
West Virginia 820
Nebraska 680
South Dakota 680
Maryland 640
Rhode Island 560
Nevada 400
Louisiana 380
Montana 370
Idaho 270
Vermont 240
Maine 200
Delaware 110
New Mexico 100
Hawaii 100
North Dakota 70
Wyoming 60