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Greg Clark savors the situation his school district has put itself in when it comes to technician recruitment.
Attracting qualified front-line technicians to the facility maintenance and engineering profession ranks among the toughest of challenges for managers such as Clark, the senior director of facilities maintenance and operations for Wake County (N.C.) Public Schools. The district works with a local community college that tries to steer students toward careers in facility maintenance as they earn credits toward an associate’s degree while still in high school. Clark works closely with high school educators to help shape class curriculum with an eye toward maintenance and engineering.
The district’s efforts are designed to address an ongoing challenge in the maintenance profession: the lack of trained technicians available to carry the torch for a generation of technicians poised to retire soon. Managers openly wonder where they will find the next crop of technicians, and Clark’s position gives him and the district a potential edge in recruiting those people.
"With maintenance guys, the demand far outweighs the resources," Clark says. "We’re aging out."
Are you wondering how to launch such an initiative? Consider attending high school career days in your area and making presentations during technical education classes at high schools. If you see students taking a keen interest in the profession, encourage them to job shadow in your department for a day to experience life as a technician and all the opportunities it provides.
For more insights from managers on technician recruitment, see this month’s Roundtable.
Dave Lubach offers insights gleaned from conversations with managers who make key maintenance and engineering decisions in commercial and institutional facilities.
Agree? Disagree? Have something to say? We want to hear from you. Visit myfacilitiesnet.com/davelubach, and start a conversation.
Dave Lubach: Staffing Strategies - Creating Future Technicians