New Michigan Career Pathway Alliance is the right approach – at a pivotal time – for the manufacturing workforce

  • Date: June 30, 2017
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

This week, Michigan announced a new alliance, the Michigan Career Pathway Alliance, geared toward supporting students on whatever career path they wish to take, while enhancing opportunities within career technical education (CTE).

Plans proposed by the alliance highlight how industry and educators can come together to create a 21st century education system that supports all students in whatever career path they take. Education today is paramount, but there is more than one path to achieving that education. For the past 20-30 years, the focus has been on encouraging students to go to college and get a four-year degree, often at the expense of careers available through all of the opportunities that come with apprenticeships, technical schools and industry certifications. Read More.

The Collaborative Path to Workforce Solutions

  • Date: June 27, 2017
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

I’ve been reminded this month of the importance of collaboration, of partnerships to advance and support manufacturing – specifically, the current workforce development challenges facing us.

It’s opportunity, of course, in the guise of challenge. Opportunity for partnerships with industry, small enterprises, education, advocacy and training groups like SME to work together and find meaningful solutions. Opportunity for government at every level to engage and support: to participate in the creation of solutions. It may be the most important work of our careers. Read More.

Be a HILO: 7 Best Practices

  • Date: June 20, 2017
  • Posted by:Dave Ewers, Director of Content Development, Tooling U-SME

Investing in people is as critical as investing in equipment or technology when it comes to remaining ahead of the competition.

According to a study by Bersin & Associates, high-impact learning organizations (HILO) with a strong learning foundation in place, tend to significantly outperform their peers in several areas: Read More.

Cox Manufacturing: A Model Apprenticeship Program

  • Date: June 16, 2017
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

This week we've heard about the White House championing efforts to build a stronger workforce by expanding training initiatives such as apprenticeship programs. At Tooling U-SME, we are already working with leading companies embarking on these learn-and-earn programs to develop the future workforce. Read More.

A Renewed Commitment: Apprenticeships

  • Date: June 15, 2017
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

Citing a commitment to “supporting working families and creating a pathway for them to have robust and successful careers,” the White House declared this week to be Workforce Development Week, with the president making appearances to promote the elevation of apprenticeships as a central role in his labor policy.

We are pleased with this acknowledgement of America’s massive skills gap, and certainly agree that apprenticeships can play a central, critical role in addressing America’s current and growing need for skilled workers. Read More.

Accelerate Your Success

  • Date: June 08, 2017
  • Posted by:Dave Ewers, Director of Content Development, Tooling U-SME

Somehow it’s June, and we are halfway through the year.

We talk with manufacturers all around the country who are optimistic about the potential for strong business results...but concerned this success could be in jeopardy due to a lack of skilled workers.

Growth, productivity, customer satisfaction, safety — all business results are contingent on having qualified, motivated people in the right positions.

But there is a shift in the industry. Manufacturers are tired of waiting around to see what the job market produces on its own and are taking control by creating and sustaining their own pipeline. Read More.

Building a Culture of Continuous Improvement

  • Date: June 06, 2017
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

Regardless of the industry, business competitiveness is fundamental. Lean thinking helps improve competitiveness by instilling a culture of continuous improvement. In a Lean culture, the entire organization is committed to a thought process and actions that increase productivity, sales, and market share. Lean methodology aims to deliver maximum value while minimizing waste.

Today, in order to be successful, all areas of a company – beyond production – need Lean thinking. Read More.