Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Keeping and developing the skills of older people

24.06.2014

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.

Further information:
Prof. Dr. Bernd Zinn, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Educational Science (IfE), Vocational Education Department with a focus on technical didactics (BPT), email: zinn@ife.uni-stuttgart.de

Prof. Dr. Reinhold Nickolaus, University of Stuttgart, Institute for Educational Science (IfE), Vocational, Business, and Technical Education (BWT), email: nickolaus@bwt.uni-stuttgart.de

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
Further information:
http://www.uni-stuttgart.de/

Further reports about: BMBF Education IfE Industrial demographic change industrial services mechanical processes

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Just add water? New MRI technique shows what drinking water does to your appetite, stomach and brain
12.07.2016 | Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior

nachricht Massive open-access database on human cultures created
11.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Menschheitsgeschichte / Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Self-assembling nano inks form conductive and transparent grids during imprint

Transparent electronics devices are present in today’s thin film displays, solar cells, and touchscreens. The future will bring flexible versions of such devices. Their production requires printable materials that are transparent and remain highly conductive even when deformed. Researchers at INM – Leibniz Institute for New Materials have combined a new self-assembling nano ink with an imprint process to create flexible conductive grids with a resolution below one micrometer.

To print the grids, an ink of gold nanowires is applied to a substrate. A structured stamp is pressed on the substrate and forces the ink into a pattern. “The...

Im Focus: The Glowing Brain

A new Fraunhofer MEVIS method conveys medical interrelationships quickly and intuitively with innovative visualization technology

On the monitor, a brain spins slowly and can be examined from every angle. Suddenly, some sections start glowing, first on the side and then the entire back of...

Im Focus: Newly discovered material property may lead to high temp superconductivity

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Ames Laboratory have discovered an unusual property of purple bronze that may point to new ways to achieve high temperature superconductivity.

While studying purple bronze, a molybdenum oxide, researchers discovered an unconventional charge density wave on its surface.

Im Focus: Mapping electromagnetic waveforms

Munich Physicists have developed a novel electron microscope that can visualize electromagnetic fields oscillating at frequencies of billions of cycles per second.

Temporally varying electromagnetic fields are the driving force behind the whole of electronics. Their polarities can change at mind-bogglingly fast rates, and...

Im Focus: Continental tug-of-war - until the rope snaps

Breakup of continents with two speed: Continents initially stretch very slowly along the future splitting zone, but then move apart very quickly before the onset of rupture. The final speed can be up to 20 times faster than in the first, slow extension phase.phases

Present-day continents were shaped hundreds of millions of years ago as the supercontinent Pangaea broke apart. Derived from Pangaea’s main fragments Gondwana...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Clash of Realities 2016: 7th Conference on the Art, Technology and Theory of Digital Games

29.07.2016 | Event News

GROWING IN CITIES - Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Urban Gardening

15.07.2016 | Event News

SIGGRAPH2016 Computer Graphics Interactive Techniques, 24-28 July, Anaheim, California

15.07.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Vortex laser offers hope for Moore's Law

29.07.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Novel 'repair system' discovered in algae may yield new tools for biotechnology

29.07.2016 | Life Sciences

Clash of Realities 2016: 7th Conference on the Art, Technology and Theory of Digital Games

29.07.2016 | Event News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>