Educational scientists at the University of Stuttgart want to make mechanical and plant engineering “demographically sound“
How can you keep the skills and experience of older employees within a business if declining strength means that a continued employment at the original workplace is not possible? Considering the demographic change, this is a central and strategic challenge especially for the service industry, which is a personnel-intensive sector.
Educational scientists at the University of Stuttgart together with extramural research institutions and business partners are searching for solutions. Their goal is a learning and transfer concept that meets age-specific needs and supports the knowledge exchange between young and older service engineers in the industrial service sector.
Industrial services such as maintenance and repair work have become a central business field and a key competitive factor for the mechanical and plant engineering industry.
The employees in this industry increasingly not only have to possess technical knowledge but also methodical and social competences. These are qualities that have not been central to this industry in the past. Additionally employees have to be highly resilient and mobile – requirements that many service engineers of a certain age cannot or do not want to fulfil anymore.
In an aging society these requirements often lead to early retirement or to a move to a different area of responsibility for that employee. In both cases this leads to a loss of valuable skills for the service industry. There is therefore an urgent need for transfer and development concepts that ensure that the employability of older employees is guaranteed, their skills are developed in a targeted way, new career paths are developed within the company for those employees and to ensure the skills transfer to the younger employees.
This forms the backdrop for the joint project “Skills management and work structuring in the industrial service sector oriented on different life phases (EPO-KAD)”. The goal of this project is to prepare the mechanical and plant engineering sector for the demographic change in the industrial service sector and to find holistic solutions together with the companies.
The institute for Educational Science at the University of Stuttgart (Vocational Education Department with a focus on technical didactics, Prof Dr. Bernd Zinn and the Vocational – Industrial and Technical Education Department, Prof Dr Reinhold Nickolaus) as well as the International Performance Research Institute (IPRI) have agreed to work together on this project. The practical partners include the companies Voith Industrial Services and TRUMPF as well as the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Stuttgart region and the Festo Learning Centre Saar, while the German Ministry of Education and Research is funding the project (BMBF). The final costs will be around 2.9 million Euros.
In order to implement the project goals new learning and transfer environments need to be created. This is important on the one hand to diagnose the technological knowledge and especially the skills, diagnose the disturbances and remove those and on the other hand to also promote social skills. It is key in this respect that all employees are enabled to share their specific knowledge in the context of the industrial service sector. The competence of teaching is therefore likewise addressed as well as learning. For both of these a ServiceLernLab is being developed that does justice to age-specific needs and supports the knowledge transfer between older and younger employees. For this the successful concept of the ‘learning factory’ of the vocational education chair with the focus on technical didactic (BPT) is being developed to transfer to industrial services.
It is also necessary to diagnose competences in a reliable manner, where different employee roles with their specific job profiles are considered. For this, innovative and reliable instruments for competence diagnosis were developed by the Chair for Vocational, Business, and Technical Education (BWT) that can also be used for small to medium sized companies with an acceptable amount of effort. Additionally, requirements are being developed for implementation in practice. EPO-KAD creates the necessary management concepts to govern a life phase oriented skill development within a company. Furthermore, it develops a blueprint for a skill-based design of work processes and creates a system for monitoring its success.
Prof. Dr. Bernd Zinn, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Educational Science (IfE), Vocational Education Department with a focus on technical didactics (BPT), email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Prof. Dr. Reinhold Nickolaus, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Educational Science (IfE), Vocational, Business, and Technical Education (BWT), email: email@example.com
Andrea Mayer-Grenu, University of Stuttgart, Department of University Communication, tel. 0711/685-82176,
email: andrea.mayer-grenu (at) hkom.uni-stuttgart.de
Andrea Mayer-Grenu | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft
Risk taking across the life span: The effects of hardship
08.01.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung
Using social media for professional purposes – does it pay off?
08.12.2015 | Leibniz-Institut für Wissensmedien
Automobiles increase the mobility of their users. However, their maneuverability is pushed to the limit by cramped inner city conditions. Those who need to...
Advance in biomedical imaging: The University of Würzburg's Biocenter has enhanced fluorescence microscopy to label and visualise up to nine different cell structures simultaneously.
Fluorescence microscopy allows researchers to visualise biomolecules in cells. They label the molecules using fluorescent probes, excite them with light and...
NASA's follow-on to the successful ICESat mission will employ a never-before-flown technique for determining the topography of ice sheets and the thickness of sea ice, but that won't be the only first for this mission.
Slated for launch in 2018, NASA's Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite-2 (ICESat-2) also will carry a 3-D printed part made of polyetherketoneketone (PEKK),...
In the last decades, sea level has been rising continuously – about 3.3 mm per year. For reef islands such as the Maldives or the Marshall Islands a sinister picture is being painted evoking the demise of the island states and their cultures. Are the effects of sea-level rise already noticeable on reef islands? Scientists from the ZMT have now answered this question for the Takuu Atoll, a group of Pacific islands, located northeast of Papua New Guinea.
In the last decades, sea level has been rising continuously – about 3.3 mm per year. For reef islands such as the Maldives or the Marshall Islands a sinister...
The ‘Internet of Things’ is growing rapidly. Mobile phones, washing machines and the milk bottle in the fridge: the idea is that minicomputers connected to these will be able to process information, receive and send data. This requires electrical power. Transistors that are capable of switching information with a single electron use far less power than field effect transistors that are commonly used in computers. However, these innovative electronic switches do not yet work at room temperature. Scientists working on the new EU research project ‘Ions4Set’ intend to change this. The program will be launched on February 1. It is coordinated by the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR).
“Billions of tiny computers will in future communicate with each other via the Internet or locally. Yet power consumption currently remains a great obstacle”,...
02.02.2016 | Event News
26.01.2016 | Event News
26.01.2016 | Event News
05.02.2016 | Life Sciences
05.02.2016 | Materials Sciences
05.02.2016 | Physics and Astronomy