Industries & Professions /
The U.S. Department of Labor predicts overall employment for drafters to increase more slowly than the average for all occupations through 2018. However, there is some variation in employment growth by specialty. For example, employment of architectural and civil drafters will increase about as fast as the average for all occupations, as the growing population will result in a demand for new buildings, roadways, and other structures. Little or no change is expected in employment of mechanical, electrical, and electronic drafters, however. Increasing use of CAD technology will limit the demand for less skilled drafters, but industrial growth and more complex designs of new products and manufacturing processes will increase the demand for drafting services. In addition, drafters are beginning to break out of the traditional drafting role and increasingly do work traditionally performed by engineers and architects. Nevertheless, job openings will be available as drafters leave the field for other positions or retirement. Opportunities will be best for well-educated drafters. Employment trends for drafters do fluctuate with the economy, however. During recessions, fewer buildings and manufactured products are designed, which could reduce the need for drafters in architectural, engineering, and manufacturing firms.
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