Manufacturing News

Increased women’s participation in the male-dominated manufacturing sector

A series of events for women in manufacturing are playing a role in females taking up jobs in the industry.

Glenn Butcher, minister for Regional Development and member for Gladstone highlighted the rise of women’s participation in Queensland’s manufacturing workforce.

“Across Queensland, we are seeing more women becoming part of the manufacturing workforce including in traditionally male dominated roles on factory floors.”

Held across the state, the Women in Manufacturing (WIM) events provide an opportunity for women to network with others in manufacturing, share their experiences, and discuss challenges they have faced and overcome. 34 WIM events have been held in Queensland since May 2018, with an attendance of almost 2100 people.

“The speakers presenting at this morning’s breakfast are helping break down the stereotype that this is a men-only field and showing women should choose a career in this sector if they want to,” Butcher explained. “With the introduction of advanced manufacturing technologies and processes, the opportunities for women in this industry are increasing all the time.”

“A large Brisbane steel manufacturer told us about their successful recruitment strategy in 2016 that resulted in the female participation in their workforce rising by 54 per cent.  There’s no reason we can’t see those numbers at manufacturing businesses here in Gladstone and it’s initiatives like this that will help people share that knowledge,” minister Butcher said.

The Women in Manufacturing series is delivered in partnership with Ai Group. Mel Ireland, spokesperson for Ai Group, said the events bring women together to talk about the unique challenges faced by women forging a career in manufacturing.

“This event isn’t only for women. It’s also for those men who either want to support their colleagues better, or employers who want to create a more inclusive work environment, or anyone who wants to support someone they know considering a career in manufacturing,” she added.

Similar events that acknowledge women’s invaluable contribution in the workforce include the Women in Industry Awards, which recognises and celebrates women in traditionally male-dominated industries such as manufacturing, engineering, transport and mining.

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