Organizations that rely on skilled trades people to effectively run business operations are headed for challenging times, with research predicting that more than 3 million skilled trade jobs will remain unfilled by 2028.1 Such a labor shortage means these organizations will have to increasingly rely on their existing workforce, setting in place plans to upskill and reskill their employees – and to efficiently track progress to identify and close skills gaps.
In this article, we’ll take a look at several ways organizations can rely on skills management software to do so. These examples can help you develop a fine-tuned approach to skilled trades training. But first, let’s take a look at the definition of skilled trades.
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What are skilled trades?
Skilled trades refer to jobs that require specialized training, often through apprenticeships or vocational training. Examples of skilled trades include:
Skilled trades demand hands-on expertise and typically involve working with tools, machinery, and equipment. They are often essential for infrastructure, construction, and maintenance operations.
Skilled trades training with skills management software
You can use skills management software to improve your skilled trades training strategies in the following ways:
Personalized learning paths
Skills management software enables the creation of tailored training programs based on individual strengths, weaknesses, and learning styles. This helps ensure that skilled tradespeople receive the training they need to maximize their potential.
In a manufacturing setting, for example, skills management software could assess individual workers’ proficiency in operating specific machinery. Based on the assessment, floor managers might then create personalized learning paths for each worker, recommending modules on:
- Machine operation
- Safety protocols
This ensures that workers receive targeted training to enhance their expertise in areas where they need improvement. Additionally, personalized learning paths are also a key driver of employee engagement2 . In turn, engaged employees are more likely to stay at a company, increasing retention rates – a sure benefit amidst a global labor shortage.
Skilled trades roles, perhaps obviously, require very specific skills. Here, skills management software can help business leaders to map out the competencies required for these roles. This allows organizations to align training programs with industry standards and job requirements, ensuring that workers develop the skills needed for their role.
Should an organization require a certain number of employees with machining or welding knowledge, for instance, managers could use skills managed software to create a competency map that ensures employees possess skills and certifications related to:
- CNC precision machining proficiency
- Expertise in TIG and MIG welding
- Valid American Welding Society (AWS) welding certifications
Certification and compliance tracking
Training skilled trades people necessitates a comprehensive oversight of the proper certifications required for certain roles. Without it, an organization may create an unsafe or noncompliant working environment, opening itself up to myriad difficulties that can delay or halt business operations.
Skills management software provides that oversight. In AG5’s case, all compliance-related information is available at a glance via intuitive dashboards. This enables organizations to manage certifications in areas such as:
- Equipment operation
- Safety protocols
- Regulatory compliance
Additionally, skills management software can notify supervisors of upcoming certification renewals, ensuring that workers remain compliant with industry standards. Considering that the average cost of a single non-compliance event in the manufacturing industry is approximately $20,0003, skills management software is a wise investment.
Skill gap analyses
Effective training plans naturally require organizations to have a full understanding of the skills their employees possess, as well as those they need. One way to develop this understanding is through a skill gap analysis, which uses current and predictive analytics to alert business leaders to skill gaps, which can be closed sometimes before they even occur.
With 33% of manufacturers leveraging big data for planning and decision-making4, skill gap analyses are becoming increasingly common in environments in which skills tradespeople fill critical roles. They help organizations better adapt to situations such as:
- The introduction of new technologies
- Changes in industry standards
- Evolving market demands
A proactive approach to skills gaps keeps organizations agile, flexible, and with a workforce of skilled tradespeople who can work as effectively and efficiently as possible.
Use AG5 to train your skilled trade workers
The right skills management software will provide you with a centralized hub of all the skills- and compliance-related information you will need to effectively train, upskill, and reskill skilled trades workers.
Ready to see AG5 in action? Book a free, live, 15-minute demo today to see how AG5 can streamline skills management in your organization.