QMT News: April 2009
Editor's comment

All companies need to make sure they have the right people to do the job right. Such an obvious thing to say - but not so easy to do. Having the wrong people in place can be a bad move - risks increase that work is badly done, defects not picked up, rework goes up and simple human error gets into the process and so on. All of which is bad for morale and company finances.

How do these people get there in the first place? Who knows? Who should know? Previously good employees can get de-motivated., for whatever reason. More likely, management is not up to the job and have failed to spot the employee is failing in their work tasks and haven't taken remedial action to address the problem. Perhaps the processes are not fully understood, not adequately measured or documented. However the situation has arisen, the issue usually comes down to training - very much a management responsibility. Training is not only the route to remedial action, it is even more critical to improving the skills and motivation of existing employees, particularly in the the more technical and skill-based areas.

This is an issue for whole sectors, even in those that still look set for growth, such as aerospace and energy generation eg. nuclear. There is a clear danger that the technical engineering skills base will be inadequate without industry moves to invest more in employee training. The problem will be exacerbated by the current recession in manufacturing. How to hold on to existing skilled workers? Once gone, it will be difficult to replace them when the upturn comes. What a waste.

Brendan Coyne


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