Whether it is presenting Muskogee Technology (MT) to students at local community colleges and trade schools or educating high school students on the core skills needed to enter the manufacturing world, Muskogee Technology President/CEO, Westly L. Woodruff, and his Team are actively working to attract the next generation of skilled labor for MT’s future growth.
“One of our greatest challenges for current production is the necessary skilled workforce. This continues to be a concern and top priority for MT to identify creative ways to recruit and develop the next wave of skilled workers. There is a massive deficit in skilled machinists while competing in a local market and a thriving economy. We are proactively working through the schools to educate, attract, and identify our future workforce. It is mission critical to the future success of our company that we recruit and retain the necessary skilled talent required to advance manufacturing operations,” commented Woodruff, Muskogee Technology, President/CEO.
To combat historical recruitment shortfalls, Representatives from MT have launched an outreach campaign with a twopronged approach. The first is to educate high school students that there are lucrative local job opportunities in manufacturing right here in Atmore, which do not require a 4-year degree. Positions such as CNC Machinists, Machine Operators or Welders, can get entry-level jobs either through 3rd party testing and/or accredited certifications from local trade schools.
MT’s second focus is on students graduating from these local trade schools with certifications in CNC Machining, Fabrication, and Welding. MT works closely with local educators such as Coastal Alabama Community College, Pensacola State College, Baldwin County School System, & Monroe County School System to educate students on how they can use their recently acquired technical degrees locally in manufacturing.
MT is not the only area manufacturer who is seeing a shortage of skilled laborers. Brown Precision, Austal USA, UTC Aerospace, and Ingalls Shipbuilders also find a need for more CNC Machinists in the area than the marketplace can offer.
Working closely with the local school systems to inform them of the need for these types of workers and educating youth on the employment opportunities readily available in and around the Atmore area will hopefully increase the future labor force of the area market.
Lastly, MT had recently begun an internal workforce development effort using the curriculum adopted from Pensacola State College to train current team members on CNC Machining. All of these efforts are investments MT is making to meet existing production needs, as well as to prepare for future growth opportunities in the highly competitive industry of manufacturing.