The Gordon Institute of TAFE held an Industry 4.0 Skills Development Discussion recently to understand the future of skilling the advanced manufacturing workforce in Geelong.
The event brought local leaders together to discuss training needs and how best to build a stronger, capable and highly skilled workforce.
Keynote speakers included CEO Innovation Business Skills Australia (IBSA), Sharon Robertson, Department of Education and Training Industry Engagement Director, Warren Hill, Geelong Manufacturing Council Project Manager Leanne Nelson and The Gordon’s Science and Technology Head of Centre, Yasmin Chalmers.
The Honorable Richard Marles MP made a special appearance via video highlighting the skills challenges facing companies who are finding it hard to attract the right people. “It’s a problem here in Geelong and one of the solutions that’s been identified is that this issue can be tackled at a local level, but it means everyone in that locality getting around the table which is why today’s discussion is so important,’’ Mr Marles said. “It also means that the local TAFE college, for us – The Gordon – is so important in delivering this outcome. The Gordon is central to solving this.’’ Mr Marles said.
The Gordon CEO, Joe Ormeno, also acknowledged that the skills needed by modern manufacturing workers were changing. ‘’As new technologies are implemented, some core functions of manufacturing job roles have been automated, and new skills are required to engage with technology and systems,’’ Mr Ormeno said. ‘’We hear from our stakeholders that advanced manufacturing in Australia is facing major challenges due to skills gaps and shortages – and that these skills are fundamental to the delivery of a vibrant advanced manufacturing industry.’’
In recent years, The Gordon has moved into high-tech, advanced manufacturing education and employment pathways and commenced delivery of Australia’s first course dedicated to working with the emerging and revolutionary industry of composite manufacturing. With the growth of manufacturing, engineering and defence opportunities in the Geelong region, The Gordon is currently exploring industry needs and what is required to develop the skills of the future Industry 4.0 workforce.