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Manufacturing & Associated Industries & Occupations Award 2010
Discover how the semiconductor industry, new digital technologies like 5G are driving growth and what the future holds.
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Thanks to new digital technologies like 5G, there has never been a better time to start a career in the semiconductor industry. Remco van de Berg, HR Talent Resource Manager, provides insights for job seekers looking for new opportunities.
Lately, when I scroll through social media and news, I feel like I can’t avoid the headline ‘Mana Cip?’. You might be thinking, “There must be a lot of jobs in the semiconductor industry, right?” right But what kind of job do you have and do you have the right expertise?
From smartphones to cars, manufacturers and the semiconductor industry are racing to meet the world’s seemingly endless demand for chips. And while shortages will eventually come under control, emerging markets and technologies such as AI, robotic process automation, and 5G connectivity will drive semiconductor industry growth in the coming years. Let’s take a closer look at what the semiconductor industry really is, what’s driving this growth, and what the future of the industry looks like.
It’s just part of a big industry. The global semiconductor market is worth more than €412 billion and is expected to approach $1 trillion over the next decade, as discussed by CEO Peter Wennink. As part of this market, it is one of the top five suppliers of semiconductor capital equipment or ‘semicaps’ for short. We make the tools that chipmakers need. Intel (US), Samsung Electronics (Korea) and TSMC (Taiwan) are the world’s largest semiconductor companies and their largest customers. Intel and Samsung are integrated device manufacturers (IDMs) that design and manufacture their own chips. Samsung also acts as a ‘foundry’ with TSMC. The company manufactures chips designed by other ‘fables’ semiconductor companies such as Qualcomm, NVIDIA and AMD.
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The semiconductor industry spans the globe and attracts people from different countries, cultures and backgrounds. reflect this. People of 120 different nationalities work in more than 60 locations around the world. Our lithography machines are assembled and tested in our large clean room at our Dutch headquarters where most of our corporate functions are located, but our R&D, component manufacturing and customer support are located worldwide.
We have worked with the ‘big’ in the industry since we split from Philips Research in 1984. IBM bought the first PAS 5500 lithography system and soon started working with Intel in the US, TSMC in Taiwan and other Asian countries. – and US-based chip manufacturers. We engineer collaboratively, not only across teams and departments, but also with suppliers, customers, and even research institutions. For example, our partnership with the German lens manufacturer ZEISS began in 1986 and has been working since the 90s with the Berliner Glas Group, which recently became a family.
Currently, there is only one company in the world that can make machines that use the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) technology required for advanced chip manufacturing. What the world needs to keep moving forward is this cutting-edge chip (even an improvement over previous generation chips). Chips not only power devices and make them smarter, but they are also the answer to many problems facing society in areas such as healthcare, food production and energy conversion. Smarter, smaller, faster and more energy-efficient chips enable life-changing innovations, such as retinal chip implants that help visually impaired people restore partial vision. Advanced chips are also used in low-emission homes built on smart energy grids to help farmers optimize crop yields and reduce energy use in data centers.
The success of our company and other semiconductor companies has been driven by Moore’s Law, which from 1965 one of the co-founders of Intel predicted that the number of transistors on a chip would double every year (10 years later, the prediction was revised as follows: 2 every year). More transistors mean more computing power at a lower cost, making it easier to integrate chips into almost any electronic device, increasing the demand for more powerful chips.
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While Moore’s Law and ‘shrinkage’ continue, we believe the real game changers are the aforementioned industry drivers such as AI, robotic process automation and 5G connectivity. Chip technology has become so prevalent that more advanced chips are usually not needed, but more chips.
The industry is gearing up for rapid growth in 2021 as governments around the world prepare to invest billions of euros in semiconductor manufacturing and research. And, like many other companies, they hire fast and hard. We will recruit thousands of employees this year to meet the needs of our customers and markets, adding to the more than 29,000 associates already. We are looking for highly skilled people with backgrounds in electronics, mechanics, optics, mechatronics, computer science, etc. to work in EUV technology, for example. Here is a full list of job categories.
Keeping up with Moore’s Law and industry requirements is exciting and challenging, and no matter where you work in the semiconductor industry, it creates a rapidly changing work environment. At , we seem to be challenged every day. Impossible skill development.
That’s why I think it’s not uncommon for people to call it a ‘university with a factory’. My colleagues have a wide education and background. Manufacturing (including prototyping and testing) is also a big part of the company because we focus on R&D and of course we have to build the machines we design. And after the machine is delivered to the customer and assembled in the customer’s factory (or ‘fab’), we need to ensure that the customer can operate 24/7. This means our customer support team works in this field all over the world, not just providing assistance remotely. Sometimes you actually work on the same team as the customer’s engineer. Finally, supporting everything from design to customer support are our sourcing and supply chain partners who ensure our machines have the right parts in the right quantities at the right time.
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Jobs may be a shortcut to the semiconductor industry, but it doesn’t stop there. It is common for people to start in one department and move to another (sometimes completely different) department after a few years or move to another location to take on a new role. One year we will be working on a multidisciplinary team on our next generation EUV High-NA technology and next year we will be traveling to help one of our customers in Korea. With such a large and diverse company, the possibilities are endless. I like that, you can control your own personal development and determine your own career path.
I also like the fact that I have two types of career paths to choose from: technical and managerial. While managers can move up or down in a company, technical experts can be recognized for their expertise, and the highest honor of this is a fellowship.
Being in the semiconductor industry also gives you the opportunity to see the industry from a different angle through business-to-business mobility. Many sources expect that specialists in semiconductor-related technologies will choose their roles in the coming years. There are also many opportunities for people with technical backgrounds to use their knowledge in ‘non-technical’ roles such as marketing and sales. Where will the semiconductor industry take you? Now is your chance to find out.
Do you want to know more about semiconductor related jobs and occupations? Find a job or follow us on LinkedIn. With Industry 5.0, the next phase of the Industrial Revolution has arrived. It is considered an “upgrade” to Industry 4.0 with a greater focus on human-centeredness, sustainability and resilience. But how far is the vision for a paradigm shift in industrial production?
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April 2021 marks the 10th anniversary of the emergence of the term “Industry 4.0” with the concept of smart, digital and connected industrial production. Over the past decade, Big Data, data analysis and automation have become one of the main topics regarding the prerequisites, means and opportunities for digital transformation in industry.
Now with “Industry 5.0” the next step is already in front of us. Even before the anniversary of Industry 4.0, the new term is already circulating and the first article is