Fall Management Skills Training Program Courses

Patty Renneckar

The Centre for Advanced Wood Processing (CAWP) is Canada’s national centre for education, training, and technical assistance for the wood products manufacturing industry, based at the University of British Columbia. CAWP offers a wide range of training courses, professional e-learning programs, in-plant training, product development, and manufacturing improvement services. 

CAWP offers a Management Skills Training Program in nine short online training courses for wood products manufacturers. The Wood Manufacturing Council funded program development in 2009 and is open to all. CAWP will offer Quality Management and Control and Human Resources Management and Safety from September 12 to October 24.

The program is designed for various professionals, including entrepreneurs in the wood products industry who need to learn about and implement multiple management systems to delegate responsibilities and focus on business growth. There are management or supervisory-track employees within wood products companies of all sizes who need new skills to move into positions of greater responsibility. Additionally, many employees need to understand specific functions within their company to do their jobs more efficiently (e.g., salespeople who need to know how to make production decisions and vice versa). And, of course, people from non-wood products backgrounds are preparing to take on supervisory or management roles in the industry. Hiring people outside the industry is becoming more common with the skilled labor shortage.

The Quality Management and Control course module walks participants through establishing a quality management program to track and eliminate product deficiencies, monitor quality performance, and reduce material costs, customer service, rework, and other non-value-adding activities that typically erode the profits of manufacturing companies. The emphasis is on introducing and working with tools that can quickly be implemented in one’s production operations to improve quality and efficiency. It will be helpful to any company that wishes to instill a solid understanding of quality management practices in its key employees. The tools and techniques introduced in the module will yield benefits regardless of whether your company chooses to implement a complete quality system or achieve some quick wins.

The Safety and Human Resources Management course module is designed for anyone moving into an HR role who needs to become familiar with the critical systems and practices required to be effective in the human resources function. Safety is front and centre as a vital consideration for manufacturing operations, and the course also introduces a wide range of tools and techniques for successful recruitment, retention, and team building. The course covers developing systems and procedures to promote a safe working environment, describes basic safety regulations, and identifies sources of updated regulatory information. Furthermore, it explains management’s responsibilities concerning safety and covers the key aspects of labour relations, good hiring practices, performance appraisal systems, and compensation systems. It also covers techniques for creating a positive team environment within your company, leading to how to develop successful employee retention strategies. The course will cover fostering effective communication and leadership skills to motivate employees.

The course modules each require approximately 35-45 hours of study over a six-week. They are written specifically for the wood products industry and include numerous case studies and industry examples. 

Participants can either take just one or two courses to fill a particular interest or gap in their knowledge or choose any six modules (or five plus a supervised personal project) to obtain a WMC Management Certificate qualification. Each module is offered at least twice a year, and learners move through each course together, interacting and sharing information and experiences.

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