Transportation safety-related jobs in Michigan have bounced back since the Great Recession and now make up nearly 13 percent of the state’s workforce, according to a recently released study.
There were 564,477 transportation-safety jobs in Michigan in 2014, a 13 percent increase since 2009 when they bottomed out at 498,274.
Despite the rise, Michigan still isn’t back to its pre-recession level of 597,032 jobs in the category, according to the Transportation Safety Workforce Report 2015 by the ATLAS Center at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, the Workforce Intelligence Network, and the Michigan Academy for Green Mobility Alliance (MAGMA).
The authors grouped these jobs into three large clusters – engineering & design; operations; and planning.
The engineering cluster covers safety engineering in manufacturing vehicles and their components. Operations covers occupation that ensure the transportation system operates safely. And planning refers to the planning and building of the systems.
Michigan needs young people to enter the field. About 112,000, or 20 percent, of the workers in transportation safety in Michigan are 55 or older, and will need to be replaced as they retire in the next 10 years.
And there’s a growing need for people trained to work in areas related to connected, autonomous and automated technology, according to MAGMA, which seeks to advance new technology in mobility and automobile manufacturing.
To find the most in-demand jobs, the study tracked the top five transportation-safety related job postings in 2014 by Michigan employers.
Coming in neck and neck for the most sought after employee were heavy- and tractor-trailer truck drivers, with 17,000 ads, beating out software developers, with 16,600 ads.
There was also a demand for mechanical engineers who could contribute to the design of safe automobiles and their accessories, with about 7,000 ad postings.