Identifying Training ROI in Four Steps

  • Date: March 23, 2017
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

While world-class manufacturers know an investment in human capital is critical for achieving and sustaining a competitive advantage, less savvy companies relegate training and development to a minor expense line in the annual budget.

For the benefit of the industry, and our nation, which relies on a strong manufacturing sector for prosperity, this must change. Training and development needs to be treated like other investments presented to top management, with value substantiated. Read More.

CTE Programs: Overcoming Funding Challenges

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

As graduation approaches, Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs around the country are focused on preparing high school students to be employer-ready.

Manufacturers eagerly await this influx of students into the workforce. Without a doubt, CTE plays a large role in solving the skills gap.

Yet with continuing budget cuts, many CTE programs face financial challenges related to program funding for up-to-date curriculum, equipment, and technology. This impacts their ability to develop the next generation of workers. Read More.

Know the Difference between a Grill and a Smoker?

  • Date: March 09, 2017
  • Posted by:David Mack

As a sales professional, you know the difference in selling value versus price, but do you have the fundamental technical knowledge to be able to sell on value? Fundamental technical knowledge is the key to understanding your customers’ greatest challenges and how your product can improve their operations. Fundamental technical knowledge is what will make you your customers’ trusted advisor and transform your sales process from a transaction to a relationship. Read More.

New Year’s Resolution…Reboot Training in your Sales Organization

  • Date: January 16, 2017
  • Posted by:David Mack

How were your sales last year? Did you blow away your quota? Make your numbers? If so, congratulations! You are in great shape for 2017.

If not (sadly, more than half of sales reps fail to meet their sales plan), it may be time to give your sales performance a boost with training in the New Year. Read More.

Not Your Grandfather’s Apprenticeship Program

  • Date: December 15, 2016
  • Posted by:John Hindman, Director of Learning Services, Tooling U-SME

Around for generations, apprenticeships, which allow employees to earn while they learn, are seeing a renaissance as the manufacturing industry addresses the skills gap.

But these aren’t your grandfather’s apprenticeship programs. Today, informal, time-based programs are out. Formal, competency-based programs are in. Read More.

New 80:10:10 Learning Model

  • Date: November 17, 2016
  • Posted by:John Hindman, Director of Learning Services, Tooling U-SME

The retirement of millions of experienced and knowledgeable workers is creating a situation similar to that during World War II, when the incumbent manufacturing workforce went off to war and a new workforce was needed.

Out of necessity, on-the-job training (OJT) programs were developed to provide the standardization needed to quickly build a strong, reliable and safe workforce.

Today, there is a need to bring back these strong practices. This approach is critical due to the lack of strong competency-based apprenticeship programs and an incoming, often unskilled workforce. Read More.

Upskilling on Steroids

  • Date: October 27, 2016
  • Posted by:John Hindman, Director of Learning Services, Tooling U-SME

I’m out in the field…a lot. Here’s what I see: manufacturers are starting to grasp the repercussions of the skills gap due to retirements and a thin pipeline if they don’t take action.

While more than half of manufacturers say they do not have a plan for filling this shortage by 2021, the good news is that the other half are taking steps.

Now that some manufacturers have seen the light, their immediate focus? Accelerating training. Read More.

Fall’s Coming: Focus on Learning

  • Date: September 28, 2016
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

There is something about the change in the weather that fires up an urge for learning, no matter what age we are.

That makes it the perfect time for Corporate America to take a fresh look at its formal training and development programs. And it all begins with building a learning culture.

Take KYOCERA SGS Precision Tools, Inc. (KSPT), a solid carbide cutting tool manufacturer in Munroe Falls, Ohio. Read More.

Workforce 2021 Report: Gambler or Visionary?

  • Date: September 15, 2016
  • Posted by:Jeannine Kunz, Vice President, Tooling U-SME

Back in 2011, as part of our Mission Critical: Workforce 2021 initiative, Tooling U-SME sounded the alarm that the future success of manufacturing is at risk by the end of the decade if industry does not address the growing skills gap.

To assess and gauge a company’s performance related to this challenge, we introduced a one-of-a-kind “Workforce 2021 Assessment” tool. Read More.

$50.5 Million Available for Apprenticeship Programs

  • Date: August 03, 2016
  • Posted by:Gretchen Shultz, Director of Workforce Development, Tooling U-SME

Recently, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced that $50.5 million is available this year through the ApprenticeshipUSA State Expansion Grants initiative.

This investment marks the first time that the Federal government is providing funding to support States in their efforts to expand and diversify Registered Apprenticeship to better respond to industry workforce demands.

This is good news for all parties: manufacturers, the workforce, educators and local economies. Read More.

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