School-Industry Collaboration Finds Local Workers
Miura had jobs to fill at its new 100,000 ft 2boiler manufacturing facility in Rockmart, Ga., and teamed up with Georgia Northwestern Technical College and Quick Start, a unit of the Technical College System of Georgia, for help training local workers in precision-welding techniques and other technical skills required to build industrial steam boilers.
Miura, training experts from Quick Start, and Pete McDonald, GNTC’s economic development vice president, designed a program that encompassed core skills, job-specific training and collaboration strategies that would enable workers to quickly fill the positions being created. GNTC provided services that included customized industrial and organizational development training, Quick Start assistance, continuing education courses and Georgia Work Ready profiles.
According to Mark Utzinger, Miura president, the company sought the help because "Miura realizes it is an integral part of the local community and is committed to helping the local workforce fill positions" at the facility by training and retraining the local workforce.
GNTC brought potential employees to the campus welding shop where their skills were evaluated and ranked to help facilitate hiring processes. GNTC also provided use of its Polk County Campus as a training facility and temporary office for the project until the construction of the Miura facility was complete.
The Georgia Work Ready program was the core of Miura's employee-screening process, which provided workers with a Work Ready Certificate that assessed their real-world skills and documented their work readiness.
“The Georgia Work Ready assessment has been a real benefit to us,” Utzinger says. “It allows us to build the right workforce by acquiring the local talent we need to grow and prosper. Being able to see a potential employee’s assessment score allows us to better determine whether a candidate can handle the job’s responsibilities and determine additional training needs if hired.”
There is now an ongoing collaboration between the academic programs and Miura. GNTC will help identify qualified graduates to fill open and newly created positions while providing college and short-term courses to meet the company's growing need for skilled workers.