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42 SMT Magazine • May 2017 ent style of employees that exist during lunch or break times. Some will eat lunch with others and spend time talking about the day's happen- ings. Others will eat alone and maybe read the news or catch up on the local sports teams. And others still will be alone, but look as comfort- able as if they are at home. They may have their feet up on a desk, checking their Facebook page or playing online games. The point is that they are all different and require different things to feel comfortable at work. Retaining Your Team That brings us to the topic of how to retain our team of employees. With a diverse group of employees, presumably all on the same page while working, all require different things to feel satisfied in their work. Some will need higher wages—increases that prove to them that they are valued. Others will require positive feedback to feel their value. And others will want some freedom in the form of time off, whether paid or not, without negative consequences. These are issues that we all face once they are recognized. In our current environment, it doesn't make it easy for the employer to retain good employees. Time honored tactics of a budget for each department to dole out as they see fit or a stan- dard percentage raise for everyone will not work the way it used to. Our methods of acknowledg- ment must be adjusted for the current times. Companies invest a lot of time and effort put- ting together a good team. We must invest the same time and effort to retain them. It's easy to be complacent once you have the team as- sembled and working smoothly. However, if we cannot retain them the effort has been wasted. Conclusion With the many complications our country is going through currently, the task of filling manufacturing positions seems inconsequen- tial. As a company owner or manager though, it is a daunting task. As with running a business, finding, training and retaining good employ- ees is a constant effort. We cannot simply sit back and wait for the perfect employee to show up at our door, no matter how many ads we've placed. Also, we cannot expect good employees to simply stay loyal to our company forever un- less they've got a good reason to. In good hir- ing times or bad, finding, training and retaining good or better yet, great employees requires a constant effort. One that will prove worthwhile in the long run. SMT John Talbot is the president of Tramonto Circuits, which designs, manufacturers and supplies flexible circuits and printed circuit boards for customers around the world. THE CHALLENGE OF FILLING POSITIONS IN THE PCB ASSEMBLY INDUSTRY Source: I-Connect007 Research According to our recent survey on hir- ing, the greatest challenge that compa- nies in our industry face when hiring was "finding qualified candidates"; 93% of respondents cited this as a critical issue. To recruit new employees, companies are using multiple methods as shown in this chart. I-Connect007 Survey: Help Wanted!

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