The U.S. manufacturing industry employs 8.5 percent of the national workforce and produces 18.2 percent of the world’s goods.1 Unfortunately, many manufacturing companies are also struggling to keep up with the competition. They’re dealing with skills gaps, low productivity, and financial risks associated with regulatory compliance, among other challenges.
To alleviate those issues, many companies are onboarding and upskilling staff with online manufacturer training though a learning management system (LMS).
3 Ways LMS Software Meets the Needs of Manufacturing Companies
1. Minimize financial risks associated with noncompliance -- Manufacturing companies are held to strict regulatory requirements, including those related to safety, product integrity, and laws governing exports and international conduct. Manufacturers must remain compliant with these requirements to avoid financial penalties.
Properly managing certification and compliance training can be a taxing job for large manufacturers, but it is necessary for minimizing financial and safety risks related to noncompliance. LMS software can help manufacturers streamline compliance management by automatically tracking and reporting on employee progress through required compliance courses.
2. Increase productivity -- Productivity problems can cause manufacturing companies to take a major financial hit. For example, just an hour of unplanned downtime can cost companies up to $260,000 per hour, according to Machine Metrics.3 While an LMS won’t help you prevent downtime (unless you’re using it to train IT, machinery, or network infrastructure staff), this statistic does give you an idea of just how costly it can be for a manufacturing company’s productivity to drop.
The time employees spend training away from the workplace reduces productivity and can negatively affect a company’s bottom line. With online learning delivered via LMS software, manufacturing staff can learn on their own time, according to their own schedule, and on their own mobile devices. This prevents unnecessary business downtime.
3. Close skills gaps -- There is a major skills gap in the manufacturing industry: “...the skills gap may leave an estimated 2.4 million positions unfilled between 2018 and 2028, with a potential economic impact of 2.5 trillion,” stated Deloitte.4 Gaps in knowledge can lower productivity, but LMS software can help to close these gaps by equipping manufacturing employees with essential skills they are missing.
Some of the most important skills manufacturing workers need include soft skills, such as teamwork, decision-making, and customer service. Technical skills, especially those related to IT, are also needed.
Can an LMS Help Manufacturing Employees Gain Critical Skills? explains how LMS software narrows or closes knowledge gaps. By training workers across a broad variety of topics, encouraging company-wide knowledge sharing, and assisting employers in locating skills gaps and adjusting training as needed, an LMS can help manufacturers upskill employees effectively.
LMS Software Can Alleviate Key Concerns and Decrease the Cost of Manufacturer Training
The benefits of learning management software for manufacturing companies go beyond compliance, productivity, and upskilling. eLearning can also decrease the cost of manufacturer training, sometimes dramatically. For example, Dow Chemical lowered training costs from $95 per learner to just $11 per learner after switching from classroom training to eLearning.5
By saving on training, manufacturing companies can funnel more funds into initiatives designed to reduce overall business costs and meet operational goals, such as implementing IoT, modernizing equipment, and expanding their businesses.6
If your current LMS software is not meeting your company’s needs, find out what to look for in a new LMS in How to Find an Effective LMS for the Manufacturing Industry.
1. The Balance. U.S. manufacturing: definition, statistics, outlook. https://www.thebalance.com/u-s-manufacturing-what-it-is-statistics-and-outlook-3305575.
2. Industry Today. Compliance in manufacturing. https://industrytoday.com/article/compliance-in-manufacturing/.
3. Machine Metrics. The real cost of downtime in manufacturing. https://www.machinemetrics.com/blog/the-real-cost-of-downtime-in-manufacturing.
4. Deloitte. 2018 skills gap in manufacturing study. https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/pages/manufacturing/articles/future-of-manufacturing-skills-gap-study.html.
5. eLearning Industry. How to dramatically reduce corporate training costs. https://elearningindustry.com/dramatically-reduce-corporate-training-costs.
6. Cerasis. The top 5 manufacturing challenges in 2018. https://cerasis.com/manufacturing-challenges/.