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Medical Devices

Your Valuable Manufacturing Skills

Many manufacturing jobs, as you know, are not returning to the United States. However, if you are one of the thousands with valuable skills in manufacturing, medical device manufacturing could be a great place to restart your career. 

Like precision manufacturing, medical device manufacturers need people with the following skills sets:
  • Solid understanding of quality systems
  • Knowledge of manufacturing tolerances
  • Attention to appearance and process detail
  • Experience using CNC, lathes, mills and grinders 


Some Things You Could Be Doing

If you’re the hands on type your jobs in this field could include: Components assembly, including subassembly of ports, connectors and backings
  • Forming plastic molds
  • Using tools like- spot welder, plastic press, magnifying glass, multimeter/ohm meter
  • Performing and/or coordinating calibration and  testing environmental monitoring systems; and ensuring components remain sterile
If you like to plan and keep things on track manufacturing jobs could include:
  • Implementing and maintaining quality assurance testing practices.
  • Write standard operating procedures for maintaining quality and completing production processes
  • Auditing and reviewing the production process to control, effectively maintain, and remain in compliance with FDA and other agency quality control regulations. 
If you’re more interested in the big picture and the latest devices you could be involved in:
  • Collaborating with other departments to establish, maintain, and improve production levels. 
  • Developing new products and/or tooling production lines for new products.
  • Sourcing materials for existing and new products.

What’s Happening with Jobs?

Bioscience-related companies can be found in 73 of 88 Ohio counties. The Medical Device & Equipment Manufacturers subsector employed the most workers (60,600) of any area within the bioscience industry. The Medical Device sector also paid out the largest amount of wages in 2011- averaging $75,523.  In general, Ohio-bio companies attracted nearly $2.4 billion in funding from multiple sources in 2011, including venture capital, acquisitions, angel investors, federal grants, and state initiatives.
Examples of corporate expansions include: Medical equipment maker Steris, which employs roughly 1,000 people in the Cleveland suburb of Mentor, is investing $8 million on a new parts-production plant and fabrication facility. Steris will move 25 workers here from a call center in Mississauga, Canada, and create an additional 75 manufacturing and engineering jobs.
Morris Technologies expanded during 2011 in the Cincinnati suburb of Sharonville. They are the largest supplier of direct metal laser sintering parts worldwide, assisting with rapid prototyping, short-run manufacturing, and rapid manufacturing in the medical and engineering fields. The project is expected to create 75 jobs and retain 84 positions.

Training Options

Because medical devices are used on humans, there are new skills to learn depending on your specific career interests.  Training might include:
  • Making medical devices where each component remains sterile
  • Understanding FDA regulations regarding the kinds of materials that can be used and how devices are assembled
  • Understanding how the products and/or their components interact with or could affect the human body
Other types of jobs will need knowledge of manufacturing and design systems using tools like CAD.  Here is an example of what CAD is and how it is used.
The good news is there are plenty of opportunities for medical device training. Or, if you’re not interested in the traditional college experience you can become a certified technician. 

Where To Go From Here

Check the Explore Careers and Develop Skills tabs for more information on exciting medical device jobs.