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A current analysis by Joblift shows that 3D printing has created more than 6,000 new jobs over the past two years. “Small companies benefited most of all from this boom,” the analysis states. These companies advertised more than double the number of job openings compared with the previous year. All in all, the average monthly growth rate for job advertisements in this field was 7% – the rate for the German job market as a whole was “only” 3%.

Another insight gleaned from the analysis: The locations of the companies posting the advertisements seem to indicate that the industry is decentralizing. Although Munich offers 15% of all newly advertised 3D-printing jobs, plenty of experts are also sought-after in Hamburg and Berlin. What’s more, three of the ten most important locations are in cities with fewer than 8,000 inhabitants. In 2017, the two companies with the most advertised positions for 3D printing were EOS GmbH and DMG Mori AG , headquartered in Krailling and Bielefeld, respectively. Both are industrial solution providers. Additive manufacturing would thus be an ideal way to reach the “plateau of productivity,” according to Gartner’s Hype Cycle : The most job advertisements for 3D-printing-related jobs – 2,205, to be exact – were to be found in mechanical and system engineering, followed by the automotive industry (1,403), dental and medical technology (1,343), and aviation and spaceflight (1,289). Designers, mechanical engineers, and programmers are in particularly high demand.

The Association of German Engineers (VDI) discussed a “revolution in layers” in September 2017 and described 3D printing as a potential job creator. To accommodate growing demand for products made with additive manufacturing, however, companies with production facilities must first build up their skills in the new digital technology.