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In an age when manufacturers are striving to accomplish more work with fewer workers, anything that helps to motivate and retain a skilled workforce is worth the investment. At Fusion OEM, one of our key investments is employee training. A thorough, well-designed manufacturing training program offers a wide variety of benefits for manufacturers, including reduced costs, increased employee engagement, and product quality improvements.
This week, Fusion partnered with Best Inc., to provide our Panel Shop and Production team members IPC Certification Soldering Training (J-STD-001 Requirements for Soldered Electrical and Electronics Assemblies). Best visited our facility with their Mobile Training Center, the only self-contained solder training center on wheels. It had all of the conveniences of a modern electronics work bench including stereo microscopes, ESD protection and professional hand tools. The two-day training was a resounding success for Fusion, our employees and our customers. Below find three ways we all benefit:
- Employee engagement.Ongoing training supports a culture of continuous improvement, where employees feel empowered to make suggestions to better company performance. In addition, ongoing training helps them adapt to the constantly changing manufacturing industry by introducing new methods and skills required to do their job more effectively. This cultivates an environment that is supportive of their professional growth.
- Product quality. As new employees are trained, they may develop an even more efficient way to complete a task because they have acquired new information and increased their proficiency. Employees who received IPC Certification were able to put their newly acquired skills, and techniques to work immediately, some the very next day. In addition, even our experienced wiremen were able to pick up best practices for increased efficiency through improved processes. The training was valuable to every employee who participated, regardless of skill level or previous experiences.
- Operational flexibility. Every manufacturer knows that sometimes the unexpected happens. Cross-training enables operations to continue if a key employee becomes ill or requires a leave of absence. The ability of cross-trained employees to fill in during absences, vacations, and peak demand periods can reduce the costs involved in hiring and training temporary workers or new employees. Cross-training can also improve the overall work atmosphere for your manufacturing company, which may in turn improve the bottom line. When you need all hands on deck in demanding situations, manufacturers that cross-train will have a better chance of bouncing back quickly from major disruptions because they have developed a flexible workforce.
Forward-thinking contract manufacturers realize the importance of training their employees early and often. Providing IPC Certification to our employees via Best Inc., has led to productivity gains that help us stay competitive. Throughout the training, the instructors were knowledgeable, detailed and passionate about soldering. Employees were able to receive real-time feedback, and make necessary adjustments without delay. This was an eye-opening experience, and just one of many ways Fusion continues to invest in our business.