For many, seeing brilliant, blue sparks flying past a welding mask in a factory is just welder fusing metal together. Melissa Zeilinski said for her, it’s more like watching an artist at work.

“These are a different type of artist. When you look at what they do on machining a part, or welding a part. We have engineers that design them. Well, somebody’s got to build them and that’s our trades,” said Zeilinski.

Teledyne Brown cut the ribbon on their new High Bay Manufacturing Building in Huntsville on Thursday. Zeilinski is the Director of Human Resources at Teledyne Brown Engineering (TDE). She said finding these specialized artists is a challenge.

“It seems for a while, everybody was going to college and not a lot of people were going to trades. So we’re really feeling that shortage right now,” said Zeilinski.

Right now, TDE is searching for several of them. On Thursday, the company cut the ribbon on its new High Bay Manufacturing Building. The 22,000 square-foot addition to the Huntsville plant will bring with it 30-40 new jobs in welding and machining.

“Since we are a basically a life-cycle manufacturing, from start to finish, we create large, fabricated assemblies that we actually build and test here in Huntsville, we’ll need skilled assemblers. And that is also going to add to our welding force as well,” said Scott Hall, Sr. Vice President of Maritime Systems and Manufacturing.

For TBE, one method of recruiting comes from adding new technology to help build for the energy, defense and space industries. Jeff Holley, the director of manufacturing operations, said two new pieces of equipment specifically for the new building, including a SNK-300RB, to increase the size of the parts they can build. Holley said TBE is also working on recruiting by changing the workflow environment.

“We’re able to do all the machining in this building with the more complex parts and the more complex machines to keep them all close together so that we can use the employees to help out and move parts and have more of a lean atmosphere in order to be more competitive,” Holley said.

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