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Adapting to the skills shortage

Welding table in use

It’s no secret that there is a shortage of good welders in the UK. In fact, there seems to be a shortage of any welder, good or bad. It seems to be a career that people are losing interest in joining.

There are probably two main reasons for this.  Firstly, the baby-boomers filled the gap well, and also this filtered down to some of the next generation. However, as the baby-boomers retire there is a lack of youngsters interested in coming through.  The welding industry unfortunately receives negative perceptions about the job. Secondly, many young people lose interest in the career path as they think of it as repetitive and monotonous, low paid, working in a dirty environment and lacking in growth opportunity.  It seems to be forgotten that welding is a precision skill, requiring an excellent attention to detail, the ability to read technical drawings, and mathematical ability, not to mention the skill of welding itself which in many ways is still a ‘dark-art’.

As the baby-boomers retire, and their own children also approach retirement age, this lack of new blood is becoming a bigger problem by the day.  So, how do we adapt to overcome the problem?

Fortunately, BH Tungsten Grinders Ltd are here to help.

The best way is to work smarter. If for example, you are making repeat parts for a large order, a lot of time will be spent jigging up the work in readiness for welding.

Simply by using one of our welding tables, your welder or semi-skilled labour will be able to jig up the workpiece a lot faster and with greater precision. The welding tables provide a perfectly flat and stable surface, with gridlines and scales pre-marked to aid with alignment. The tooling is quick release, easy to use and precise. Once the first workpiece has been prepared and welded, it can easily be removed from the table and the next part can be jigged. The welder can rest easy knowing that the first part they welded will be identical to the last part they welded, as long as their component parts are cut precisely.

Depending on the size of the parts to be fabricated, you may be able to set up multiple parts on one table, meaning that your semi-skilled labour is constantly setting up for welding and removing completed parts. Alternatively, for larger parts you can use two or more tables. This results in better utilisation of the welder’s time. Not only have does this increase productivity, but it also increases your profit margin for each part.

All of our welding tables come in a variety of sizes, to suit every process and budget.  There are three systems available 16, 22, or 28 depending on the weight and size of the welded component. For more information call us on 0116 2864343 or email