Shop Floor Automations Explores MFG Day

SFA highlights three organizations that have helped close the manufacturing skills gap in special ways. 

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Shop Floor Automations (SFA), as an official endorser of MFG Day, shares stories of customers who are always looking for ways to close the manufacturing industry skills gap. 

SFA highlights three entities or persons it has worked with this year and talks about special ways they are helping to close the manufacturing skills gap.

FuelCell Energy, located in Torrington, Connecticut, is a customer of SFA, which was able to provide DNC software, as well as Ethernet RS23 hardware in an effort to establish communication between an old Bridgeport CNC machine and a new PC. Ross Bonacci, tool and die marker and CNC machinist instructor, believes that young people just graduating college are realizing the great opportunities within the manufacturing field and will close the skills gap—MFG Day helps to instill that belief.

SFA’s neighbor, Rise Up Industries, in Santee, California, is a non-profit organization that provides an 18-month program to reformed gang-affliated ex-prisoners with CNC machine operator training, life skills training, real-life exercises in work ethics and additional forms of support. Machine shop manager and instructor, Dustin Greeves, is proud of the program the Rise Up Industries team provides to these ex-prisoners but also of the work that the team does in expanding the manufacturing workforce. We plan to assist them in software and hardware donations for their operations once they have completed their expansion. Until then, SFA has become a customer. Rise Up Industries also screen-prints shirts—which is where SFA’s new shirts have come from—and Rise Up Industries sells its own brand of coffee.

Fredon Corp. in Mentor, Ohio, has worked to bridge a technological skills gap for older machinery with a solution that can be universally used at the 70,000-square-foot home office. SFA provided floppy drive emulators and portable USB drip-feeding hardware to assist with this issue. Randy Glover, project manager, enjoyed the process of finding a solution that could be utilized by all team members, regardless of technical ability.