The main goal of Ignite Your Career, SMACNA’s workforce development campaign, is to raise awareness of the sheet metal industry and bolster the workforce pipeline with qualified candidates. To accomplish this, it’s essential to start by determining the key audiences most interested and receptive to pursuing a career path in the industry.
This workforce development campaign targets various audiences through different mediums, including social media, advertising campaigns, infographics, videos, website content and more. With the mission to spread the word about the benefits of the industry and provide access to the tools needed to find local opportunities, it’s important to view the workforce campaign through the lens of these key audiences. In fact, this strategic targeting is why you may not see all the visibility and awareness we are generating (since you aren’t the target audience of the messaging).
Here are some of the principal audiences Ignite Your Career regularly targets with its messaging:
- High schoolers are ideal candidates to target with information on the sheet metal trade before they enter a path for a specific trade. Persuading this audience to consider a sheet metal apprenticeship program is a key goal of Ignite Your Career’s mission. Targeting characteristics identified by our extensive research of more than 25,000 social media users for this specific audience include those interested in arts and design work as well as gaming.
- Since apprentices join paid training programs where students don’t take on traditional student debt, it’s important to present this option as a lucrative alternative to college for those who want to jumpstart their career, while earning a good wage early on and without the burden of student loan debt. They also are receptive to joining an essential industry.
- For college grads looking for non-craft positions in the industry, Ignite Your Career targets those with degrees in construction management, building science, engineering, or related fields. Graduates looking for a management career track can consider professional internships or entry-level positions in design, estimating, or project management.
Career Changers and Veterans
Pursuing career changers provides our industry with people looking for a more steady and rewarding career path. Career changers tend to be more committed to the prospect of a new career and craft, having already been down a path they no longer with to continue on.
The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed several opportune sectors facing challenging environments or economic distress. Industries like aviation, public transportation, food service and hospitality, and even law enforcement, are inquiring about opportunities in our trade. For these workers, the sheet metal industry is an essential trade that offers great compensation — two factors workers are searching for right now.
SMACNA continues to analyze and learn from the more than 1,200 employment inquiries we have generated. For more information about the program, visit igniteyourcareer.com.