Meeting Demand for Skilled Welders Requires New Training Solutions

Posted By: Chad Schron, Senior Director, Tooling U-SME on April 14, 2020

Skilled Welder

Demand for welders is on the rise. From rebuilding bridges to manufacturing cars, skilled welders are needed to advance the economy. But what happens if there aren’t enough welding experts to do the job?

It’s concerning that the United States will need more than 450,000 welding professionals by 2022, according to the American Welding Society (AWS).

Now is the time to shore up welding training, so that workers can take advantage of this rewarding career that offers good pay and benefits. However, employers face several challenges in meeting demand for skilled welders.

As with many roles in the manufacturing industry, welders today face a very different environment than generations before. There are different levels of welding training: workers can earn welding certifications, associate degrees and bachelor’s degrees. Automation has turned welding into a high-tech skill. Plus, advancements in materials, processes and equipment are transforming these jobs, as well. So, what does all this mean for welding training programs?

Welding Curriculum Must Adapt

Back in 2015, Tooling U-SME introduced a series of online welding courses to give welding professionals a competitive edge and to ensure manufacturers could meet demand for welders. As the industry has evolved, so have these welding courses.

Last year, we announced a new partnership with our long-time collaborator Lincoln Electric — a leader in the design, development and manufacturing of welding products. The partnership provides an extensive and more user-friendly welding curriculum to welding instructors, educational institutions and companies.

In addition to online welding courses, we have expanded our curriculum to include a comprehensive set of welding education tools, such as:

  • Lab activities
  • Demo videos
  • Workforce assessments
  • Instructor guides
  • Training presentations
  • More

With Lincoln Electric, we can reach welding training instructors and training authorities to help develop a strong welding workforce, ensuring individuals learn from curriculum aligned with current industry standards.

Building Career Pathways for Welders

Another way Tooling U-SME is addressing the demand for welders is through our Turnkey Training, a quick-start, progressive training roadmap that helps manufacturers build career pathways for employees.

Available for a variety of job roles, Turnkey Training leverages insights from manufacturing experts to enhance existing on-the-job training and support the creation of job progression plans. For welding training, employers have access to self-paced, online welding courses that typically take 60 minutes to complete. That means busy, in-demand employees can progress through a job role in one year, with as little as four hours a month spent on online training.

Whether you have demand for senior welders or entry-level hires, Turnkey Training can help. Online welding courses focus on welding fundamentals as well as advanced welding training topics. Simply mix and match course offerings to develop personal job progression paths that make sense for your workers and your company.

With manufacturers from industries including automotive and aerospace driving demand for skilled welders, the time is right to invest in a welding training program. Companies that build long-term career pathways for welding employees will be best positioned to meet current and future production demands.

Tags: "advanced welding training", "American Welding Society", AWS, "Lincoln Electric", "manufacturing training", "online welding course", "Tooling U-SME", "Turnkey Training", "welding certification", "welding course"