Interviews with 3 Organizations impacting MFG Day
Shop Floor Automations (SFA) is a big supporter of MFG Day, and the 2017 holiday celebrating American manufacturing was a great success. Whether manufacturers invited students into their shops on the actual holiday of October 6th, or held events throughout the month of October, over 2,800 events took place in the USA.
There are many schools of thought on how to fill the manufacturing skills gap, but the common bind is getting the concept of manufacturing in front of young people who may not have considered it as a career. There are experts in the field who have different tactics in accomplishing this goal.
Here is the top 3 ways to get kids and young adults interested in manufacturing:
Edutainment: Jeremy Bout of Edge Factor started his network of manufacturing media content to combine his love of storytelling and his passion for CNC machining. To reach a younger audience seeking careers, this is where “edutainment” comes in, AKA media content (such as videos) that is entertaining while also heavily based in an educational foundation. With billions of users on YouTube and other streaming services such as NetFlix, it is definitely a great strategy to latch on to video viewers.
We interviewed Jeremy back in February of 2017, and we linked up again right before MFG Day. While sitting on a plane heading to do a story based on the xGames and skateboarding, Jeremy wrote to us about what is next for Edge Factor.
“I can tell you that we are working with so many schools, communities, and other leaders in communities,” Jeremy said to us. They are also around the corner from doing a big brand update, as well as using the last part of 2017 to get a roll out strategy going for their highly anticipated film Masters of Resonance.
“If you weren’t already engaged with getting the next generation or the next pipeline of workers coming into your plant, you better be focused now,” Jeremy said in an interview with us earlier this year, when addressing the topic of the Made in America movement growing. “There was already a need before, but the need just got way deeper.”
Apprenticeships: “According to the National Association of Manufacturers, the [manufacturing] industry has the highest multiplier effect of any major economic sector,” Margo Turner of Power Minds tells us. “If agencies focused on developing one working apprentice for every four college students, it would equal five million new tradespeople in the workforce.”
Margo’s previous experience includes serving as the Technical Assistance Provider/Statewide Director of Communications for the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office. With her experience in the educational field, she sees the value of apprenticeships, and believes involving the government to create more of them is a great route to go.
“These government-sponsored initiatives work best when they become tribal,” Margo says. “By that, I mean involving a broad range of government and business stakeholders that come together to assess the challenge, deploy agile teams and co-create solutions. When developed and executed in a collaborative atmosphere, these programs will thrive from implementation to measured success.”
Military Veterans: While there is a major concern in the manufacturing industry about the changing technological landscape affecting the skills gap, we also have a societal concern to take care of our military veterans. When they come home, they deserve to have stable careers, so organizations such as Workshops for Warriors (WFW) are doing valuable work in this area.
Making sure the technological skills of our veterans is up to par with the industry is crucial. This is a big concern that WFW addresses with every course they teach.
“What sets WFW apart from any other Veteran educational organization in the nation are the Nationally-recognized portable and stackable credentials our graduates have the opportunity to earn,” Hernán Luis Y Prado, WFW founder, told Shop Floor Automations in an interview the week before MFG Day. “These credentials are our graduates’ passport to financial freedom, anywhere in the world, for life.”
Credentials that these veterans can gain include those from the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS), CNC Software Inc. (MasterCam), SolidWorks, Immerse2Learn, the National Coalition of Certification Centers (NC3), and the American Welding Society (AWS). There are many niche areas in the manufacturing industry that veterans can fit into, thanks to WFW.
About SFA: Shop Floor Automations is an avid supporter of helping to fill the skills gap, as well as providing shop floor solutions to address this issue, and combatting loss in productivity. We are on social media on Twitter @SFA_inc, as well as on Facebook, YouTube, & Instagram under our company name. Call for more info at (877) 611-5825 or Email firstname.lastname@example.org