This paper documents how plant-level wages, occupational mix, and workforce education vary with the adoption of new factory automation technologies, such as programmable controllers and numerically-controlled machines, in a group of 150 mechanical and footwear-manufacturing firms. The analysis was carried using some econometric models with directly-surveyed cross-sectional data. The main piece of evidence obtained is the existence of a marked sectorial differentiation in the effects caused by introduction of the technology: in the leather-working industry, the expected result of a positive correlation between technological level, occupational mix and wages - wit skill-biased technical change - was observed. This relationship is completely lacking in the mechanical industry, which is nevertheless characterised by an overall greater intensity of qualified work and by average wages that are higher than those in the leather industry. The results are commented in relation to both the limits of the model and the existence of disturbance factors, such as the presence of hidden labour.