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How Much Do Factory Workers Make?

July 5, 2023 | Career Blog

The hardworking men and women who make up America’s factory workforce are at the heart of our nation’s economy. Without factory workers performing duties in their role, the supply chain cannot thrive.

If you are looking to be part of this valuable workforce, you might have questions regarding pay. In fact, we are often asked, “How much do factory workers make?” It’s a great question to ask, and we are here to provide insights into your expected pay for working in a factory.

How Much Do Factory Workers Make? Here’s What the Numbers Say

Whether you work in a manufacturing facility, a distribution center, or another type of factory, you can become an important part of the supply chain and the national economy. Consider this information we’ve compiled about the typical pay for factory workers.

Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides some of the most in-depth and accurate information about the national average of factory worker pay.

Obviously, some variables impact how much factory workers make. For instance, since there are different types of factory worker jobs, each of those jobs offers different levels of pay. Additionally, the responsibilities of a factory worker will directly impact how much he or she can expect to make.

Whether you’re just getting into the world of factory work or you’re looking into making a move from your current employer to a new one, consider the following studies conducted by the BLS. We’ve provided both the annual average hourly rate and the annual average wage based on a study published by the BLS for Production Workers, which is the category that factory workers falls under.

Overall Range of Salaries for Production Workers

  • Low-end: $13.23 per hour/$27,510 annually
  • Lower end: $14.68 per hour/$30,530 annually
  • Median pay: $17.06 per hour/$35,490 annually
  • Higher end: $21.00 per hour/$43,690 annually
  • Highest end: $27.01 per hour/$56,180 annually

Industries with the Highest Levels of Employment in Production Workers

  • Employment Services: $16.61 per hour/$34,550 annually
  • Plastic Products Manufacturing: $18.35 per hour/$38,180 annually
  • Nonmetallic Mineral Product Manufacturing: $19.15 per hour/$39,830 annually
  • Merchant Wholesalers/Durable Goods: $19.61 per hour/$40,800 annually
  • Miscellaneous Manufacturing: $17.46 per hour/$36,310 annually

Industries with the Highest Concentration of Employment in Production Workers

  • Other Transportation Equipment Manufacturing: $19.45 per hour/$40,450 annually
  • Other Furniture Related Product Manufacturing: $17.04 per hour/$35,450 annually
  • Leather and Hide Tanning and Finishing: $13.97 per hour/$29,060 annually
  • Employment Services: $16.61 per hour/$34,550 annually
  • Rubber Product Manufacturing: $18.17 per hour/$37,790 annually

The Importance of Geography

It’s important to note that in addition to job titles, the geographic location of the factory in which you work has a direct impact on the average hourly and annual income that you can expect. 

Areas of the U.S. that have fewer factories and, in turn, fewer factory positions, typically pay a higher hourly wage than areas that have a myriad of factories and factory worker positions.

For instance, according to the BLS, the District of Columbia has the highest hourly and annual income for factory workers at $33.69 per hour, which translates to $70,080 per year. Meanwhile, states like Michigan, which is home to a large number of America’s factories, pay less on average than many other states.

Since Michigan hosts so many factories and there are countless factory workers applying for jobs, those companies can offer lower pay. Workers earn less than their counterparts in other parts of the country for performing similar work.

Understanding Factory Worker Job Titles

One of the most appealing aspects of working in a factory is the ability to work your way into different positions. While many industries leave you “pigeonholed” into a particular role, that’s not the case in a factory.

Through ongoing training and different certification processes, you can transition from one role to another. Here’s a look at five of the most common job titles among factory workers.

1. Assembler

Assemblers typically work in factories that rely on the assembly line method of manufacturing. These professionals may be responsible for attaching a specific part to cars that come down the line in an auto-manufacturing plant, or they may build different types of furniture.

In many cases, assemblers are also responsible for quality assurance inspections and packaging in some situations.

2. Production Operator

A production operator, sometimes referred to as a CNC or machine operator, receives specialized training that allows them to use certain pieces of equipment within a factory.

In addition to knowing how to use the equipment, production operators also receive training on inspecting and repairing their equipment.

3. Quality Control Technician

Quality control technicians are responsible for ensuring the products that go out of the factory meet standards set forth by their company, their clients, and even state and federal government entities.

In addition to ensuring the products that leave the factory meet quality standards, they also inspect equipment within the factory to make sure safety standards and other company policies are being followed.

4. Inventory Control Specialists

While inventory control specialists typically don’t get involved in the daily manufacturing processes that take place in a factory, they do keep a close eye on everything that goes on. 

  • Responsible for tracking the materials within the factory.
  • Monitor purchase orders, shipping, receiving, and more.
  • Research ways to improve the inventory levels within the factory.
  • Make suggestions for improvement to management.

5. Manufacturing Engineer

Finally, manufacturing engineers work with other departments to overcome obstacles that occur in a factory setting. They’re also responsible for making sure that factories are using their resources in the most profitable and productive way.

Find a Factory Job Near You

There are many other job titles in factories, and each factory has its own set of available jobs. These titles each come with different pay scales and responsibilities, which will impact the answer to your question, “How much do factory workers make?”

Whether you have years of factory experience or you’re new to the field, you can find the right job that fits your skills and experience.

– Get started today by checking out our Job Board to find available jobs in your area.

– Also, Allegiance Staffing works closely with factories across the U.S. to help them fill available positions with the best candidates. Contact us today to learn how you can connect with an employer looking for someone just like you to bolster their workforce!