Editor's Comments: It is great to see GE taking the lead and proactively closing the skills gap in manufacturing. It is exciting to read about an organization that is not talking about old-time manufacturing struggling to survive but embracing the digital future of robotics, artificial intelligence and additive technologies. I don't think for a moment that this is easy: for GE or for any other manufacturing organization.
The skills gap has proven to be highly complex and difficult to solve, but with determination, innovation and support from the top - organizations like GE will thrive in the digital economy. I loved the line from the Brilliant Learning Model, "This story is not just about technological and digital innovation. This is about people who are engaged and have the courage to embrace what comes next." In the word of Philippe Cochet, "Manufacturing has always been an incubator for ingenuity, but courage to embrace the future is required. Those that grab it will find themselves a part of something bold and exciting. This is the new manufacturing we should all be thinking about."
Yesterday I spent the evening with reporters in Boston. We talked about manufacturing and what’s next in technological advancement and productivity. A big part is how we train our existing workforce with new skills.
At GE, we’re not afraid of the robots on our factory floors.
Our people are working side-by-side with robots – and 3D printing, big data, digital and lean manufacturing and other advanced technologies are becoming the tools of the trade. It’s part of our Brilliant Learning model, and we’re seeing results. At GE’s Brilliant Factory in Grove City, where we manufacture engines for our locomotives around the world, unplanned downtime on the shop floor is down by 20 percent.
GE’s Chief Productivity Officer, Philippe Cochet, said it best: “We don’t have to choose between American jobs and technological advancement.” You can read more of his opinion piece here: http://www.gereports.com/global-local-future-manufacturing/