Upskilling Current Workers to Address Skill Shortages
A shortage of skilled workers to fill current vacancies and the growing skills gap in the manufacturing workforce is becoming one of the most pressing problems facing manufacturers. Whether it is a new product, increased sales, or more innovative equipment, employers are seeking talent for the changing manufacturing landscape.
Finding a pool of potential candidates with the necessary knowledge and skills can be a daunting task. Employers frequently voice their frustration and dissatisfaction with the caliber of individuals seeking manufacturing positions. Finding individuals who can quickly master the needed skills and who fit into the company’s culture can be frustrating.
Upskilling current workers is one strategy that companies are starting to consider as a way to get the needed qualified workforce. Incumbent worker training, whether delivered at the company or at an educational institution, can be the short-term solution. Current employees have already demonstrated their ability to do the work and fit into the company’s culture. Providing them an opportunity for training is often a welcome benefit that can lead to promotions and employee retention.
Partnering with a local community college or university can provide easy access to quality instruction that can be adapted to meet the company’s needs. Participating in company sponsored training can motivate employees to continue their education and pursue additional credentials or degrees.
MAGNET: the Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network works with companies to assess their talent needs, identify their skill gaps, and develop a plan to address current and future workforce needs. As a workforce intermediary, MAGNET helps companies connect with educational partners and identify the knowledge and skills needed. The content and delivery format can be adapted to fit the company’s schedule.
By upskilling current workers, employers have a confidence level about their employees’ ability to meet the company’s production demands. Once training is completed and individuals are promoted, employers can seek candidates ready for the On-the-Job training needed to fill the positions vacated by advancing incumbent workers.
One remarkable thing about the list is that it rarely changes. The order may change but the top cited standards typically don’t change. Top 10 Sited Safety and Health Violations: 501 - Fall Protection 1200 - Hazard Communication 451 - Scaffolding 134 - Respiratory Protection 147 - Lockout/Tagout 178 - Powered Industrial Trucks 1053 - Ladders 305 - Electrical, Wiring Methods 212 - Machine Guarding 303 - Electrical, General Requirements Three of the 10 sited standards are directed at the construction standard (1926) while other fall within the general industry (1910). It should be noted however that the general industry standard also has fall protection guidelines. Year after year, inspectors see the same on-the-job hazards, any one of which could result in a fatality or severe injury. More than 4,500 workers are killed on the job every year, and approximately 3 million are injured. By understanding these regulations you can improve your safety program and prevent injuries. Give me a call if you have any compliance doubts, or want to review OHSA regulations. Gwido Dlugopolsky at 216-391-7766 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Why does it take a NASCAR pit crew only 15 seconds to change four car tires when it takes people like you and me minutes? The answer is simple SMED. Single Minute Exchange of Dies, or SMED, is a process for reducing the time it takes to do equipment changeovers. Using the principles of SMED you should be able to perform any changeover in your facility in under 10 minutes! The SMED process is simple – convert as many changeover steps as possible to “external”, meaning they are done while your equipment is still RUNNING, while simplifying and streamlining the remaining steps. SMED is broken down into the following 3 Steps: Separate Convert Streamline We found this article to be very helping in explaining the SMED process in more detail: LEAN PRODUCTION - SMED A good first step to achieve this level of SMED efficiency would be to run a kaizen event at your facility to standardize (5S) your tools and supplies. Doing this alone will help you achieve 40% to 50% greater efficiency. Once the “low hanging fruit” is gone, you can still reduce setup times another 20% by practicing more advanced SMED principles.
The secret to closing any sale is to reduce uncertainty in the buyer and replace it with confidence in YOU, your PRODUCT/SERVICE, and your COMPANY. Step 1 – Confidence in YOU Someone buying from you wants to be able to fundamentally connect with you on a human level and feel confident that you’re an expert in what you’re selling If you’re selling paperclips, be an expert in paperclips If you’re selling design and engineering related services, be an expert in design and engineering related services Focus on addressing the problem, not the solution….MEANING you already know you have the solution, connect with the buyer by being an expert with the problem he/she is facing. Prove that you know the problem and all aspects of the problem like the back of your hand. Step 2- Confidence in the PRODUCT/SERVICE you are selling Someone buying from you needs to trust the product/service you are selling will solve their problem. It’s your responsibility to deliver a solution and the benefits associated with it. Basically you need to “Hit a Homerun” communicating this message. Tip – Use Success Stories: Share with the potential buyer examples of your product/service solving problems and delivering value for