If you are looking to grow your business, you are going to need to add to your operations staff. Are you assured of a supply of suitable candidates, or just planning on placing ads in the local paper and seeing who walks in the door?
I am a guy who is still using the tool box that I made in Middle School shop class. I first cut the steel; then bent, welded, riveted, and painted every surface and feature. As the father of four children that graduated high school as recently as 2015, today’s youth are not as clued into manufacturing as we once were.
Back then, when kids chose to skip secondary education and went directly out into the workforce, they had some basic skill sets that a manufacturer could utilize and grow. Of all the people that applied, manufacturers could hire and start refining skill sets with training. Over time, shop classes faded from the curriculum. Manufacturers responded by engaging the candidate base, making selections, assessing the raw talents of new hires, and then teaching the skills that they needed.
Now, with no shop classes and a diminished availability of candidates, neither of the aforementioned strategies will work. If your company’s workforce planning is still mired in the past, you will be severely handicapped going forward.
Create a new pathway to your doorway, partner with your local schools in a myriad of ways to increase your visibility.
- Mentor students
- Sponsor/Advise a Project Lead The Way (PLTW) or other academic program,
- Offer manufacturing career education information,
- Open your plant to tours and information sessions,
- Start an apprenticeship program
Or, you can continue on, letting the path to your door get overgrown with weeds, due to a lack of traffic.