Vaughan Chief Engineer Arne Swenson answers the following questions regarding the state of the industry.
What is your company doing to address the skills gap?
We have seen the skills gap issue coming for a number of years. To combat the issue, we work with our local schools and offer scholarships to encourage students to pursue careers trades and degrees in the fields we directly support. We also support regional and national associations with scholarship and training programs.
What issues have you seen with any material shortages or supply chain issues?
One of the biggest issues we have seen and heard from others about is communications around delayed shipments. Notifications around delayed items are not communicated well. As an industry, if a shipment is going to be 3 months late, customers deserve to know this as soon the delay is identified, not one week before it was scheduled to arrive.
How do you expect automation and AI to affect the industry in the next five years?
In our industry, we are expecting (and already seeing) a greater use of robotics in manufacturing and AI in predictive maintenance. It is extremely important to maintain strong oversight in these two areas as technology gets more involved in critical decision making.
What are you most looking forward to in 2024?
Getting back to business as normal as we put the challenges of the pandemic and supply chain issues behind us.