What Jobs in 3D Printing?

By on October 22nd, 2016 in Ideas


 There are a great many job types in 3D printing
There are a great many job types in 3D printing

Some believe the boom in 3D printing has led to new jobs, and indeed it has. But what kind of jobs are they? I made a list. 

It is easy to speculate on the type of jobs generated by new 3D print ventures, as some roles are obvious, such as product engineer. 

To someone asking “how can I get into 3D printing?” the answer that might immediately come to mind is, “learn 3D CAD” or “figure out how to operate a 3D printer”. 

But there’s a great deal more roles that come along with any enterprise of any size. 

For sure, each style of 3D print business may require different roles, and in some cases many types. A 3D print service bureau might require some roles different from a 3D printer manufacturer, for example. Bu in fact, certain roles would likely be found in almost all cases, though. Here’s a short list that you might think is long: 

  • Executive
  • Financial Management
  • Marketing 
  • Sales
  • Social Media Management
  • Business Strategist
  • Marketing Support
  • Business Development
  • Product Manager
  • Industrial Design 
  • Hardware Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering 
  • Quality Assurance and Testing
  • Product Assembly
  • Shipping
  • Customer Support
  • Front-End Software Development
  • Back-End Software Development
  • Database Management
  • UX Designer
  • Web Management
  • System Design
  • Materials Engineering
  • 3D Design
  • Infrastructure Support
  • Graphics Design
  • Legal
  • Office Management

In fact, smaller companies would typically find a single individual performing multiple of these functions. As companies grow and topic areas become larger, the usual pattern is for increased specialization of roles, perhaps into a breakdown something like the above. 

Where am I going with all this, you ask? My point is this: 3D printer companies are surprisingly similar to most companies, in that they must employ people to perform a number of basic business functions. It’s NOT just about 3D stuff. 

So, if you happen to want to get into 3D printing and you happen to be a marketing expert, there IS a role for you, somewhere in the vast world of 3D printing. 

In fact, a common mistake made by smaller 3D printing startup companies is that there is too much focus on the engineering dimensions and insufficient attention paid to other business activities, such as financial management, or legal matters. 

There’s room for almost everyone in 3D printing.

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!