Fabrication: The Pathway to a Bright New Future
May 11, 2018
Are you tired of dead end jobs with odd hours and no weekends off? Are you working your butt off week after week with nothing to show for it? Would you be interested in a whole world of employment that is wide open to people with your sense of dedication? If you answered “yes” to these questions, it may be time to consider a career in the Fabrication Industry.
With our company’s current growth, we foresee a continuing need for new personnel. Our focus is on building a long-term pipeline of talent to fill positions as needed. (This is not a five-year plan – we have openings right now!) Our recruitment strategy involves finding experienced workers, nurturing potential talent and thinking outside the box to find dedicated individuals who we can turn into fabrication professionals.
The Quest For Talent
As experienced operators are reaching retirement age, hiring talent from within the industry is becoming increasingly difficult. The pool of entry-level recruits is small, mainly due to a variety of misconceptions: manufacturing isn’t glamorous, the pay is poor, factories are dirty, etc. The truth of the matter is, not many younger people have discovered how lucrative and rewarding a career in manufacturing can be. We’re trying to change that.
Our recruitment effort is spearheaded by Human Resources Manager, Kim Wimer. She works closely with the Lake County Workforce Development Board and recently took part in a round table with other manufacturers in the area to increase enrollment at the Lake County High Schools Technology Campus. The campus offers juniors and seniors from area high schools an opportunity to receive hands on experience in IT, automotive, engineering, welding, etc. Naturally, people from these programs and students in technical programs at local colleges are an excellent source for recruitment.
Last summer, in conjunction with the University of Dayton, we initiated our first three-month intern program. Combining design experience with hands-on time with the press brake (sheet metal bending) machine, the project was such a success that the intern was offered a job in December. It was our first hiring of its kind.
Building Our Own Talent Pool
What about people without a manufacturing background? If we find someone with a solid work ethic and an eagerness to learn, we will teach them the specific skills required. How far out of the box are we willing to go? Let’s just say we have found great employees whose last positions were in retail, coffee houses, construction and even landscaping. The fact is that 50% of our workforce did not start out in manufacturing. We’ve actually found that our structured environment is very attractive to people who are used to working odd shifts and weekends with no chance of advancement.
Promoting From Within
Speaking of advancement, one of the biggest benefits to the company that comes from building our own talent pool is succession planning. Three members of our current management team started their careers on the shop floor. Others are currently moving up to leadership positions within the plant. “People may not be manufacturing professionals when they walk through our doors,” Kim commented, “But they soon will be.”
In our next article in this series, we will take you through the onboarding process at Laser Precision and our focus on continuous improvement for our employees. For more information on available opportunities at Laser Precision, visit our careers page.