The Maintenance Crisis and the Innovations That are Changing It
Contributed by: Ashley Halligan, an analyst at Software Advice
Joel Leonard, President of SkillTV, said to me the other day, “I was at Harley Davidson yesterday. They have 4,500 manufacturing personnel, and the average age is 55–and it’s one of the most legendary entities in the United State. If that’s not scary, I don’t know what is.”
Leonard defines the “maintenance crisis,” essentially as a depletion of skilled workers as baby boomers exit the skilled labor work force; meanwhile, less young folks are expressing an interest in skilled labor careers. In an effort to conquer the widening workforce gap, people like Leonard are creating some pretty innovative strategies to encourage interest in younger generations, reduce stigmas, and, amazingly, coming up with fantastic technology to make the market more attractive. The market is a broad one, and professionals specializing in preventive maintenance, manufacturing, etc. are quickly retiring. Filling these precise roles is crucial.
Some of the innovations, and strategies maintenance and manufacturing personnel are implementing include some of the following:
- Hands-on, “tinkering” summer camps like Nuts, Bolts, & Thingamajigs.
- A newly released application called Occupy a Job, that helps students, or unemployed adults in the workforce assess skills sets, and demonstrate alignment with in-demand careers.
- Gamification of maintenance training: “We pioneered scenario-based training apps, beginning with military maintenance in the Navy,” Amy Earl, VP of Antech Systems says. “Adult Learning Theory shows self-correction leads to more significant retention. This is precisely what game-based training allows for.”
The collaborative efforts of savvy industry professionals are working very hard to encourage interest, and subsequent employment before too many roles are left unfulfilled.
Read the full story and expert insights here.