SMT Magazine

SMT-Sept2017

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88 SMT Magazine • September 2017 by Stephen Las Marias I-CONNECT007 In a recent interview with SMT Magazine, David Bergman, vice president of standards and technology at IPC, explains how the orga- nization helps elevate the industry through its training, continuous education, and standards development. Stephen Las Marias: What are the big challeng- es you are looking at that really need to be tack- led for overall industry growth? David Bergman: The most critical issue we are facing is the recruitment and retention of em- ployees. This stems from several other issues, specifically, a growing skill gap between the knowledge and skill that our current workforce possesses, and the knowledge and skills need- ed to compete in a global marketplace; rapidly evolving technology and the currently ineffi- cient means of disseminating and swiftly train- ing our workforce; lack of educational struc- tures that support work and learn opportuni- ties, stackable credentialing and education, and rapid retraining; and lack of transfer of re- tiring professional's knowledge base to young engineers. Las Marias: What are the causes of these chal- lenges? Bergman: These challenges are created by a myriad of core issues in our industry. The single largest problem, however, is the lack of clear- ly defined career pathways, mechanisms for growth, and a structured training framework for the industry. Without clearly defined career paths, the industry will have trouble recruiting young talent that can easily decide on indus- tries with "better" opportunities. Without mechanisms for individuals to grow, the industry has trouble maintaining the talent they currently employ. No one wants to be working in the same job 10 years from now. This also ties back to the first point of a lack of career pathways. Finally, the lack of training and apprentice frameworks in the industry make it difficult to recruit and retain talent. This also impacts other parts of the industry also. The lack of this training infrastructure makes it dif- ficult for companies to rapidly retrain employ- ees for changing needs or the emergence of new technology. Las Marias: Why is there a need for continuous training and education of the current workforce in the electronics assembly industry? IPC's DAVID BERGMAN on Industry Training and Education INTERVIEW

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