Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) has announced a plan to hire 2200 workers in the United States this year. The announcement comes just a day after the firm revealed it was going to double the dividend it paid to shareholders in 2013. The plan forms the biggest single salaried hire by the auto company in more than a decade.

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The US auto industry is riding high on news that December was the biggest month for car sales since 2007. The industry that almost sank in the early days of the financial crisis now appears to be leading the United States toward recovery. More than that, it is adding jobs in the United States, a necessity for any recovery.

Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) said it will be hiring  in engineering, manufacturing and computer software. The positions will be white collar, and will support the firm’s plans to design and produce new and varied products in the coming years. The company has been hiring aggressively since its fortunes began to turn around last year, based on a deal it made in 2011 with the United Auto Workers Union.

As part of that deal, the company committed to adding 12,000 jobs in the United States by 2015. The company added more than 8,100 jobs in the country in 2012, and is clearly not slowing down. Yesterday, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) announced that it was hiring 1000 workers for a new center in Atlanta.

The auto industry has certainly been one of the most visible sources of new jobs in the recovering economy. Since the problems faced by the firms were solved, or otherwise defanged, during the financial crisis, the industry has bounced back, and appears to be one of the most dynamic in the US economy today.

Aside from its cultural importance, the auto industry is of massive importance to the US recovery, simply because the industry has to add jobs in order to grow. The United Auto Workers Union has managed to get guarantees that these jobs will be added, and its work ensures that those jobs are of a certain quality.

The industry is an instructive lesson in times when Unions and industries can work together in order to ensure success, rather than battling to a standstill and ensuring failure. Union’s can be a positive force in the economy after all.

Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) is famous for offering a five dollar work day to employees in 1914. The move doubled the wages of much of the work force overnight and is now seen as an important move in improving efficiency in early factories. Henry Ford himself was adamantly against Unions.

Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) shares had risen by 0.8% to $13.94 at time of writing. The firm’s advancement toward its hiring goals are to be given some credit for investors’ confidence in the company. The firm’s shares have risen by more than 7% so far in 2013, and some analysts are predicting that the US auto industry will continue at least until 2015. The auto industry appears to have captured attention at the start of 2013.