Minneapolis - Ted Biggs, Vice President of Manufacturing at AWT Labels & Packaging was honored to be a presenter at the 2016 Flexographic Trade Association Fall Conference, October 10-12 at The Galt House Hotel in downtown Louisville, KY.
Biggs led an interactive presentation titled A New Paradigm in Press Operator Training, addressing the dilemma between continued growth in the flexographic printing industry and the lack of trained press operators available to fill open positions. He provided resources to help employers identify qualified candidates and weighed in on various flexographic press training methods. While Biggs recommends hands-on training courses he acknowledges that there is a limited number of all-inclusive programs available. As a solution, AWT Labels & Packaging and Computype partnered to develop Flexographic Tech, a Nonprofit 501 C (3) corporation, dedicated to providing hands-on flexographic training programs. Other major sponsors of this important industry initiative include Platinum Level: Green Bay Packaging, Mark Andy, Eaglewood Technologies; Silver Level: Flint Group and UPM Raflatac; Bronze Level; Avery Dennison, Harper Corporation.
Flexographic Tech classes range from two days to three months, enabling students from across the country to receive intensive, hands-on flexographic press room training on a Mark Andy press supplemented with lectures and structured activities. Flexographic Tech provides an opportunity to work alongside competitors to develop trained operators. According to Manpower Group: For the sixth consecutive year, skilled trade vacancies are the hardest to fill in the U.S., and for the fourth consecutive year, skilled trade roles are the hardest to fill globally.
“It’s time to work together because training is needed to support the vitality and growth of the printing industry,” says Biggs.