Apple is an iconic American company, but ironically most of the products are manufactured overseas. CEO Tim Cook is taking a stand to address the issue and investing more than $100 million in job creation stateside in 2013, an effort that could set a precedent to promote more training in modern manufacturing.
The New Project
Since Cook, who joined apple in 1998, took over the late visionary Steve Jobs’ position last year, he has helped Apple increase the company’s worth by 43%. Although the location of the jobs has not yet been released, Cook said the project will involve the creation of a new Mac. The recent announcement is set to bring a lot of positive attention to the tech company.
Where the Jobs Are Now
“Over 60 percent of our sales are outside the United States. So we have a responsibility to others as well. But this is our home market, and I take all of those very seriously—jobs, education, giving back, the environment,” Cook said in an interview with Businessweek.
And, according to Cook, Apple has created a lot jobs for Americans to date. These jobs are in areas outside of manufacturing, which he estimates over 600,000 positions. Americans are employed through research and development jobs in California, retail stores across the country, as well as through app development and data centers in North Carolina, Nevada and Oregon.
What Will Change
Still, it looks like most of Apple’s manufacturing jobs will remain abroad for some time because, as Cook says “it’s not so much about price, it’s about the skills.” He highlights that most Americans are not prepared for the technologically advanced form of manufacturing that the company requires. But he hopes his new efforts with this project will help train more workers to work in modern manufacturing processes.
And perhaps in some time more companies will invest in developing a new class of workers ready to adapt to a changing manufacturing market. Apple has already taken the first step—and with more legislative support and pressure from American consumers, more change will be implemented.
“A survey by the Hackett Group found that 46% of executives at European and North American manufacturing companies said they were considering returning some production to the United States from China, while 27% more said they were planning for, or were in the midst of, such a shift, reported The New York Times in August.
“This new manufacturing won’t involve as much of the American work force as manufacturing used to, nor will it have the same high union wages and benefits. But it can create millions of technical jobs and add jobs businesses that serve it,” Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich said.