Just can’t get the staff

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - MAINTENANCE MATTERS -

I re­cently at­tended a US Whitehouse-led con­fer­ence to ad­vance man­u­fac­tur­ing at the Ge­or­gia In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy in At­lanta, Ge­or­gia.

Dur­ing the day a se­ries of cor­po­rate and govern­ment rep­re­sen­ta­tive spoke about the chal­lenges to ad­vanc­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing per­for­mance. A pan­elist from the aero­space in­dus­try said his com­pany builds bas­ket­ball sized satel­lites. How­ever, he said that as they pre­pare for launch, a crit­i­cal piece of equip­ment of­ten fails, and they have dif­fi­culty find­ing people to fix it.

“Where are the main­te­nance fix­ers of to­mor­row?” he asked the au­di­ence.

That ques­tion caused a de­bate on the chal­lenges of find­ing welders, CNC tech­ni­cians, and other types of skilled tech­ni­cians.

The fa­cil­i­ta­tor asked: “Does any­one know how to build large pipe­lines of skilled main­te­nance pros? Where do we find them? How do we build them?

When no one else re­sponded, I pro­ceeded to share not just how to iden­tify talent, but how to build a so­ci­etal cul­ture that sup­ports these ca­reers.

My be­lief is that we can’t just fo­cus on in­tern­ships for our youth, we need to fo­cus on re-turn­ships, to re­train dis­placed talent and up­grade them to tackle new chal­lenges. We need to take ex-of­fend­ers and give them new path­ways to pros­per­ity.

What we glo­rify, we get. So un­til more of our main­stream me­dia start to glo­rify the skilled worker, and in­form par­ents that the world of man­u­fac­tur­ing is not what it was, we will con­tinue to have anaemic growth.

Con­tact Joel at Joel@ skilltv.net

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.