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DECEMBER 2018 I PCB007 MAGAZINE 59 tivator for nonmembers to join IPC. Attending one of the largest exhibi- tions of its kind in North America— coupled with all the activities such as technical sessions, professional de- velopment courses, standards com- mittee meetings, and the number of exhibitors and attendees—generates so much energy that you want to be a part of it and become a participat- ing member rather than a spectator on the sidelines. In addition, we always have a booth with management ready and avail- able to answer all questions. We also have various programs that we announce at IP APEX EXPO to enhance membership. Typical- ly, if it's a first-time member, we offer an intro- ductory rate for membership. Those are some of the various programs that we have. Matties: You talked about 4,800 locations. What sort of growth have you experienced in the last three years? Friedman: Growth has been phenomenal: 20% over where we were three years ago. Matties: What do you expect for the coming year? Friedman: With enterprise memberships being offered—which is only a year old now—the growth rate will be maintained. Matties: What do you think is the most hidden value that an IPC member needs to know about? Friedman: We're focusing a lot on education, especially with the labor shortage and retire- ment of experienced engineers. This will fill a niche to provide continuity for both us and corporations and from a relevancy standpoint, bringing added value to the IPC relationship. Matties: I was talking to a couple of training fa- cilities, and they mentioned there's an unex- pected increase in the demand for training. Is that part of the awareness that you're driving as well as market conditions? Friedman: Plus, we're enhancing our online ability to train up-and-coming engineers. We're planning more courses online that will be in- structor led. You can get real certification as a member of the team going through various projects, which is something that is not avail- able today. Matties: Do member companies request train- ing, and if so, do you build curriculums spe- cifically for that? For example, maybe a large OEM says, "We need this type of training." Friedman: Licensed third-party training cen- ters provide most of our training and certifica- tion, and we offer precertification-level train- ing, online training, and some certification through IPC EDGE. If we do receive requests that seem to be an industry groundswell, then yes, we'll go ahead and develop training for that demand. Currently, we're asking our members to vol- unteer to join the IPC JTAC (Job Task Analysis Committee) to help document the core knowl- edge, skills, and abilities required to succeed in key roles in our industry. The outcome of this project will shape IPC's future certification and education programs for years to come.

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