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W&D Weekly
April 3, 2019
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Help (Still) Wanted

The availability of qualified labor is increasingly seen as a major problem in the construction and manufacturing industries, and it's only getting worse. Many factors have led to this shortage. Among them, large blocks of aging skilled workers are retiring, many skilled workers left for other occupations during the Great Recession, and many candidates can't pass drug tests. Renewing apprenticeship programs to attract different populations to the industry could attract younger workers and retrain workers from other fields. In addition, government agencies, community colleges, businesses and nonprofit organizations are trending toward revitalizing effective skills certification and apprenticeship programs. Read More


More News
US Department of Labor Issues Proposal for Joint Employer Regulation
Jeld-Wen Completes VPI Quality Windows Acquisition
Assa Abloy Acquires Spence Doors in Australia
Window Safety Week Observed April 7-13
ODL Offers Grilles Between Glass Products
Donnie Hunter Becomes Chairman of the AAMA Board of Directors, Janice Yglesias Now Executive Director
The Talk

Laurie Cowin

Last week, I attended Glass Processing Automation Days in San Antonio. Organized by FeneTech and supported by the National Glass Association, the event is focused on the glass side of our world. But there was still a ton of great information about integrating automation that applies directly to our industry.  

The 20 presentations throughout the two-day-long conference all focused on automation and Industry 4.0, which encompasses digitalization, automation, connectivity and analytics. Although I’ve spent plenty of time writing about automation in construction in a previous job, the automation on the manufacturing floor was among the most advanced I’ve seen in the construction world.  

Most presentations included videos and renderings of shop floor robots, and presenters touted automation’s benefits. Among them: the need for fewer people (some robots could eliminate up to six positions per shift); increased safety (robots can perform dangerous tasks); and the elimination of human error and increased job satisfaction among human workers (robots don’t mind doing boring and repetitive tasks). Robots also don’t require benefits, paid time off, breaks, vacations, insurance premiums or other costs associated with hiring individuals. Read More 






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