Advanced Manufacturing and Industrial

You may know Iowa as an agricultural state – and you wouldn’t be wrong. But here’s the kicker: advanced manufacturing is MORE THAN THREE TIMES LARGER than all of Iowa’s ag activity combined.
The manufacturing industry already employs an incredible 15 percent of Iowa’s workforce.

Iowa is one of the nation’s few surviving centers for advanced manufacturing. In turn, engineers, machinists, mechanics, industrial designers, inventors, skilled laborers and machine operators of all stripes have all found themselves in high demand by the more than 4,000 manufacturing companies that call Iowa home.

Despite an already-huge employment base, things are still looking up for manufacturing in Iowa, which is one of the nation’s top-five spots for manufacturing industry growth. Plus, Iowa’s manufacturing industry runs like a well-oiled machine: Manufacturers here specialize in 14 of 18 industry subsectors, and are deemed “highly specialized” in five areas vital to international infrastructure.

That adds up to mean that here, you don’t just have to be another cog. You’ll have more to do, and more opportunity, too. Don’t be a cad — check out a manufacturing career in Iowa. If you want to make it, we think you’ll find it’s easier here.

Welcome to the job factory.

Do you have specialized training? If it’s in one of the following areas, congrats — you’re in high demand in Iowa. See where the biggest opportunities in Iowa are at

  • Primary metals processing
  • Automation precision machinery
  • Environmental controls systems
  • Computers and electronics
  • Power generation
  • Aerospace and defense
  • Vehicles and transportation
  • Construction components
  • Food and ingredients
  • Pharmaceuticals and medical devices
  • Industrial chemicals
  • Plastics and rubber
  • Printing and packaging
  • Furniture
  • Wood products

Ames, Iowa, has a strong industrial base, with a handful of world-class companies calling it home, including 3M, Ball Plastics, Sauer-Danfoss and Barilla.

Eastern Iowa

Eastern Iowa’s Cedar Rapids Iowa City Corridor is big on technology, playing host to aerospace, tech and defense company Rockwell Collins. It and numerous other Fortune 500 companies help the region export more than $13 billion in manufactured goods each year.

Veterans Wanted

Find communities and employers offering specific benefits for Veterans at Homebase Iowa