Top 5 Manufacturing Certifications Employers Should Sponsor
As manufacturing trudges into a rapidly changing future, education is one of the primary pillars for cultivating a strong workforce. The challenge for manufacturers is recruiting strong STEM candidates capable of leading production into the next generation. But traditional education is not the only option. Continuing education — via certification courses — is more cost effective for employers to finance and ensures the company will reap the benefits of an employee’s new knowledge.
Here’s a look at five certification programs manufacturing companies should encourage their employees to pursue — and why it makes sense to cover the cost of certification as an employee incentive.
Highly experienced manufacturing engineers might consider going for their CMfgE Certification. To receive this designation, it’s recommended that a manufacturing engineer have at least eight years of combined on-the-job and educational experience. At least four of those eight years should be work experience. Obtaining CMfgE Certification requires a lot of time and effort, but most people find that it’s worth it for the promise of an increased salary.
Engineers must complete a certification exam to receive their CMfgE Certification. The exam features 180 multiple-choice questions and usually takes around four hours to complete. The exam is open book, open note, and all of the questions come from the Certified Manufacturing Engineer Reading List. Passing the exam requires a score of 60% or higher.
The CPT Certification program teaches individuals mastery of the front-line core competencies of manufacturing production. Everyone from entry-level employees to front-line supervisors can enroll in the CPT Certification Program.
The CPT 4.0 Program features several different assessments, including safety, quality practices and measurement, manufacturing processes and production, maintenance awareness, and green production. Employees must demonstrate clear knowledge of these five areas before completing the program.
CAP Certification shows that an individual has extensive knowledge of automation and control systems. The certification exam focuses heavily on skills with control systems, manufacturing information systems, systems integration, and operational consulting.
Individuals who possess a four-year degree, two-year degree, or no degree at all can take the CAP exam, but there are certain qualifications based on education level. Those with a four-year degree should have five years of work experience in automation. Those with a two-year degree or no degree must have at least ten years of work experience as well as two years of experience in a responsible charge position.
Someone with a CQE Certification has demonstrated thorough understanding of product and service quality evaluation and control principles. To receive CQE Certification, an individual must have the ability to use metrology to fix improper quality control practices. They should also be intimately familiar with quality control systems.
Individuals who want to take the CQE exam should have at least eight years of work experience. They should also have three years of experience in a “decision-making” position. This is a certification best suited for tenured management and those familiar with Lean practices and principles and how they’re executed in the workplace.
Manufacturing project managers should consider a PMP Certification. The PMP Certification process teaches all requirements of project delivery and direction of cross-functional teams. A PMP Certification gives individuals a leg up on the competition and shows they’re good candidates for leadership positions.
Why foot the bill for certification?
Companies paying for professional certifications benefit from knowledgeable employees and their ability to affect meaningful change in the factory environment. If you’re worried about an individual leaving after obtaining certification, consider making payment contingent on a predetermined employment period. In most cases, investment in internal education is more beneficial than external hiring — in terms of cost and employee retention.