How to Attract the Next Generation of Welders

How to Attract the Next Generation of Welders

Fun Fact: Did you know that there are only 575,000 welders in the U.S. today? That’s only .004% of the entire American workforce. But that number is growing.

And the welding profession is changing.

What was once work guided by scorching fire and aching muscles now involves high levels of skill and precision.

Common modern welding methods include:

  • Gas welding
  • TIG welding
  • MIG welding
  • Electrical arc welding
  • Plasma arc welding
  • Electrical resistance welding
  • Shot welding

At Superior Industrial Supply, we appreciate the work welders do and are excited to carry welding supplies in the St. Louis region that make welders’ jobs easier and more productive. That’s why we wanted to share some of the top-rated welding supplies we carry in the St. Louis area, ones you may not know we have in stock. But before we do, we wanted to share a few best practices we’ve gathered from speaking to industry professionals like you.

In the metal fabrication world, some would say welding is a dying trade. We disagree, we think it’s one of the most important skills a craftsman can possess. Here’s what we’ve heard from fabricators throughout our travels on promoting the trade to the next generation of welders:

  1. Create a work environment that rewards and challenges.
    There’s no room for error when welding. Welding quite literally keeps our world together, from cars and planes to buildings and heavy machinery, one bad weld can be catastrophic. After eight to 10 hours of daily production and meticulous attention to detail, your welders depend on a workplace that inspires constant improvement and rewards those who make progress a priority.
  2. Mine for talent through relationships.
    You may be fortunate to have a good crew of welders now, but you should always be looking for the next batch of talent. Fewer people are going into the trades today and it’s no secret that recruiting and retaining talent is a challenge for many companies. Create a talent pipeline to avoid last-minute scrambles when filling positions. Invest in outreach that targets local newspapers, trade magazines, trades schools and the community. Make relationship building in your industry a key priority and consider apprenticeships from local welding schools and associations.
  3. Make training a priority.
    Finding experienced welders and employees is a critical part of building an effective workforce, but don’t underestimate the importance of training programs. Regular training sessions help your veteran welders sharpen their skills and newer inexperienced welders learn new techniques. It’s also an opportunity for veteran welders to share their expertise from their own years of experience.

Welding Supplies in St. Louis? Yeah, we got that.

For almost every kind of welding, we’ve got the tools you need to get the job done. We carry a variety of welding products including grinders, grinding wheels, cut off wheels, wire wheels, flap wheels, gloves and helmets from big names like Metabo® and Loctite and more. These products are designed to save you time and money.

Metabo® Flat-Head Angle Grinders
When you have hard-to-reach areas or tight spots, the Metabo® Flat-Head Angle Grinder is your go-to grinder for smoothing out fillet weld seams or cleaning deep root seams. The Flat-Head Angle Grinders are ideal for removing welding sludge, rust or lacquer in narrow frame construction or confined spaces, plus they’re available with a battery pack for working off the grid. Learn more about Metabo Flat-Head Angle Grinders here.

Metabo® Original Grinding Discs
When you need high stock removal and a good wheel, look no further than the Original Grinding disc from Metabo®. The aluminum oxide general purpose wheel is ideal for grinding steel and stainless steel and can be used at speeds up to 10200 RPM. Learn more about Metabo Original Grinding Discs here.

Loctite SF 7900 Anti-Spatter
If you’re looking to save time on production style welding and go through fewer tips, the Loctite SF 7900 protects welding equipment from metal spatter. Ideal for manual MIG/MAG welding, laser and plasma cutting or for protecting jigs, fixtures and fittings.

See the Loctite SF 7900 in action:

At Superior Industrial Supply, we are here to serve our customers with the best in customer care, specialized product knowledge and comprehensive support. Give us a call at (800) 783-6501 to be placed in touch with a sales representative in your area.

At Superior Industrial Supply, Service is the Difference.

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