The Problem for Manufacturers

The problem manufacturers have is that they mostly employ trades people and sales people, and rely on external consultants for this obscure thing called “engineering”. They thus have no in-house technical expertise with respect to their product.

They believe engineers are too expensive to employ on staff. Well if an engineer is as defined by Engineers Australia: B.Eng MIEAust CP.Eng NER, then for certain they are too expensive and not much use on staff. An Associate Technologist on the other hand is a different matter, whilst their salaries may only be slightly less than that of the typical so called “engineer”, they are willing to do a lot more.

A modern “engineer” is likely to require the services of a drafter and baulk at the need to produce their own drawings. Design however requires iterating between drawing and calculations, and is best done by one person unless the project is too large for one person. An “engineer” therefore demands more resources than necessary to get the job done. An Associate Technologist employed on staff however can improve the manufacturers information resources, and significantly reduce future need for the services of external consultants.

The problem is getting the associate technologists on staff and providing them with appropriate training when the manufacturer’s don’t have the necessary technical knowledge in the first place. An advanced diploma in structural/mechanical design won’t produce a graduate with expertise in a given manufacturers structural product. The graduate needs a mentor or guide, to help them get up to speed, and become conversant with the structural product and its design. Once a manufacturer has a competent associate technologist on staff, then they can train the next generation of staff in-house. Running around seeking someone with 5 to 10 years experience, indicates poor management; should be able to employ graduates and train them.