Many workers on the production floor need additional skill training as manufacturers increasingly adopt emerging technologies, such as sensors, advanced robotics and sophisticated control systems. In China, skilled workers are often even harder to find than in the U.S., according to Lees.
To remedy this skills gap, DWFritz offered remedial training for new hires during a ramp up of its Chinese workforce. To get the team trained before they started work on the production floor, the company set up 4 peer trainers and 2 simulation machines where new workers could get 6 weeks of basic training, followed by working onsite with the team. This effective training strategy has helped mobilize the team ahead of schedule on machine repairs, upgrades and conversions.
During rapid onboarding in the U.S., DWFritz organizes specific jobs, like mechanical technicians, into smaller subgroups with a specific focus on only one type of build. Contractors and other employees then partner with senior employees to work on the project.
“Our build technicians are so much more than ‘production associates,’” said Steve Franceschini, DWFritz’s director of production operations. “They are highly skilled technical professionals that complement the designers, allowing us to work equally well on both repeat production builds and one-of-a-kind projects.”