Delegates inspect the machinery at the new training facility
Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has opened a high-class training facility in order to ensure UK moulders are getting the most out of their machinery investments.
Based in Daventry, the new academy, hosted by longstanding project partner Mouldshop, is designed to give new and existing customers and their machine operatives access to practical demonstrations, as well as product trials and tool testing.
Starting with the installation of a 100 tonne Systec hydraulic system and a 160 all-electric Smart machine, Aylesbury-based Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has already confirmed that it will continue to add to the centre. There is also the potential to create a clean room if demand requires it.
Nigel Flowers, Managing Director of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag, said that the facility, which formally opened on 14th September 2016, would not only help UK-wide moulders to de-risk projects, it will also focus on helping people in the trade to develop their skills and optimise production processes.
“We are offering customers everything from the very basic to advanced level training, including inductions for new starters, machine and technology awareness training and installation and process optimisation workshops. What’s more, content can be tailored to each customer’s requirements,” Flowers explained.
Last year, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag launched a new ‘Machine and Process Appreciation’ UK training programme. It initially focused on up-skilling machine users on how to operate the company’s NC5 and NC5 Plus control panel, however, it quickly evolved into a beginner, intermediate and advanced level programme, with all customers embarking on the training reporting huge productivity improvements. Using the Machine and Process Appreciation training framework, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag will run group induction, intermediate and advanced workshops from the new centre. Customers will receive personal invitations and notifications of the schedule as training dates are released. These workshops will enable customers to interact with industry counterparts and share good business practice.
Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s process and training engineer, James Hines, and the company’s newest team member Darren Vater-Hutchison will deliver most of the training. Combined, the two experts have more than 50 years industry experience, including trade moulding, automotive, pharmaceutical, telecoms and IT consumables.
Since joining the company this time last year, Hines has made site visits to a number of customers and has observed a steady growth in demand for bespoke training, especially in relation to addressing production weaknesses and making efficiency gains. “Manufacturing stability and product integrity are paramount for moulders today,” he said. “The ability to demonstrate the latest technology, run mould trials and train both technical and non-technical operatives on top-of-the-range machinery will help to advance the knowledge and skills that tomorrow’s UK plastics workforce needs. These skills will be fundamental to maintaining a competitive edge in an increasingly global injection moulding marketplace.”