Conference puts manufacturing capacity under the microscope

As a key enabler for the next resource boom and a significant infrastructure rebuilding program, is the manufacturing industry up to the challenge?

This question is the central theme – “Building capacity for growth” – for the launch of the QMI Solutions 2011 Manufacturing Skills Conference to be held in Brisbane on 9 June. 

The 2011 Manufacturing Skills Conference promises a range of speakers from industry, government and training providers. Attendees will hear insights from speakers including:
·         Atlas Heavy Engineering: how Atlas attracts young people into the industry
·         Varley Special Vehicles: The importance of developing your workforce
·         Gladstone Industry Leadership Group: Addressing workforce capacity issues in Gladstone
·         Lion Nathan National Foods: Building capacity through your people 

The Manufacturing Skills Conference is delivered by QMI Solutions through its Manufacturing Skills Queensland (MSQ) division.

MSQ is a skills centre of excellence that works closely with the Queensland Government to ensure the long-term competitiveness and capability of the manufacturing and engineering sectors.

QMI Solutions CEO Jim Walker said skills is one of the crucial areas industry needs to address to ensure industry sustainability.

“There are four key pillars of survival for manufacturers; having the right skills to meet demand, efficient processes, capability to deliver and looking for innovative ways to improve the business, and the Conference is a significant industry event is helping industry understand what this practically means in the current environment,” Walker said.

According to MSQ General Manager Erik Salonen, capacity and how people source capacity for the next wave of resource and infrastructure projects is a key issue for industry.

“With an economy still recovering from natural disasters and the remnants of the global financial crisis, addressing the balance between high expectations for growth and finite capacity is more important than ever,” Salonen said.
“The capacity to meet the volatility of demand has long been an issue for the manufacturing industry. Our Conference speakers will tell attendees their strategies for minimising the impact of that volatility to hopefully enable industry to learn from each other.”

A key part of building the industry capacity is encouraging more young people to choose a manufacturing or engineering career pathway.

The Awards night which follows the Conference recognises the input and achievement of those who are contributing to the long-term sustainability of the industry.

At the 2010 Awards, Stoddart’s Alissa Young (pictured) was named MSQ School-Based Apprentice of the Year, a title for which all school-based apprentices across Queensland could be nominated. Alissa went on to be a finalist at the Queensland Training Awards.

Nominations for the nine award categories close on 6 May – see for more details.

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