While tech seems to be the driving force behind employment growth lately, manufacturing isn’t too far behind. Twenty-eight of the top 50 industrial cities in the U.S. posted job gains last year, according to Manufacturers’ News Inc., which compiles and publishes industrial data and news.

Manufacturing employment has seen significant improvements since 2011, when only 17 of the 50 cities saw job growth. In 2012, Houston saw the biggest gains with 242,212 jobs, which represents a 3 percent increase from the previous year.

Meanwhile, while Grand Rapids didn’t see such high job numbers, its manufacturing employment grew an impressive 7.3 percent.

Other big winners include Chicago, New York, Louisville, Dallas, Los Angeles and Baltimore. In total, manufacturing jobs in the top 50 cities increase 0.5 percent across the U.S. in 2012.

With more industrial companies seeking to expand their workforce, WEAU news station in Eau Claire Wisconsin noted a great number of women are choosing manufacturing jobs.

Chippewa Valley Technical College told the news station it’s seeing an increase in the number of female students in Machine Tool, Manufacturing Engineering Technology and other similar degree programs.

Because manufacturing has a significant impact on other industries, businesses will likely be affected by the increase in employment and should consider outsourcing payrolling to an HR administration service provider.

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