Teaching New Dogs Old Tricks

Experts say that nearly 25% of the 11 million manufacturing workers in the U.S are 55 years of age or older. Just as in any industry, experience brings about the most knowledge. The longer you are in a particular trade the more you learn, whether it is through training, hands on application or trial and error. This group of approximately 2.7 million middle aged workers are a valuable asset to every manufacturing plant, they are the most experienced and typically the most skilled workers.  The knowledge base they have acquired over their years of work is endless and much of it has never been written down. Because their industrial skills are vital to how your business is run and play a large part in your plant’s competitive advantage, it is critical their acquired knowledge is recorded for the future training of new hires.

In order to attain the invaluable knowledge these employees possess you must first identify those in your workforce that may have this type of experience and education. Most of the workers that have been with your business for a number of years have worked on the all of the machines you’ve utilized and have repair tips and service tricks that no one else may know about. Next you should identify the knowledge and record what is practical and important. It’s essential you commit some time to documenting their knowledge base before their retirement approaches. With their service tips and diagnostic procedures logged you can use this material to supplement additional training courseware.

Although the industrial skills these workers have developed over time are vital to help train new employees, new hires may also need further training. Manufacturing of industrial products requires specialized industrial skills and with interest in the field decreasing in younger generations, it is critical we hold onto the older tricks of the trade. A recent survey done by the Fabricators and Manufacturers Association showed that 52% of teens have little to no interest in a career in manufacturing, while 21% are undecided. These statistics further prove that investing in quality training for current workers and new hires is vital to having a well trained staff that will ultimately increase productivity. ITC Learning offers online courseware that specializes in control training, process training, maintenance training and many more training skills necessary to succeed in manufacturing. Contact us today to find out how our SCORM based online courseware is right for you and your employees.

Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net & Ambro