Machine Tools

Manufacturing could play a key role in European growth

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ETMM: Many firms are complaining about a lack of qualified personnel. AMB is offering a range of programmes to attract young people to mechanical engineering trades. What can companies, and state governments, do to improve recruitment in this sector?

Kapp: This development is not new: For many years now, young people have been losing interest in technical careers. This problem can be solved only in the medium and long term. Companies have to continually advertise themselves and take every opportunity to showcase themselves as appealing employers with good prospects for the future. They have to cooperate with schools, technical colleges and universities, so as to attract the attention of potential recruits at an early stage and if possible secure their services. In Germany, they can work together with the VDW-Nachwuchsstiftung so as to stay in contact with vocational colleges, keep their own training operations up to date, and thus be an attractive proposition for young people. Finally, state governments and schools should give engineering and business studies a stronger presence in the curriculum, firstly to underline that our nation’s prosperity is based on these cornerstones, and secondly to demonstrate how exciting the subject matter in these two fields actually is.

ETMM: How would you rate the AMB exhibition? Do you have any suggestions about what visitors should be sure to see at this year's show?

Kapp: The AMB is an important trade fair for production technology. Many of our customers are located in the southwest part of Germany, and don’t have far to travel to Stuttgart. they can visit the fair in a single day. Thanks to the compact size of the exhibition grounds, they can be certain of seeing all the important aspects we’ve been discussing here. And they should definitely not miss out on visiting the VDW’s Blue Competence stand in Hall 7, D51, plus the special show for young people entitled “Mechanical Engineering – a Job with Power“ organised by the VDW-Nachwuchsstiftung in the atrium of the Stuttgart exhibition centre.