Many efforts to improve efficiency in manufacturing businesses are dependent on blue collar competences. New efficient machinery and lean ways of working are implemented in vain, if the employees have not internalized the knowledge and gained the competences to maintain and take further the efficiency gains. To achieve best results, competence management of blue collar workers should be systematic and forward-looking with a balance of high level strategic planning and hands-on competence development.
A new competence management model was developed as a project output. A prototype machine was designed and developed to pilot this new competence management model and was used in four different enterprises, all in metal sector. This machine enables to assess technical competencies and although it was used in assessing technical competencies Mechanical Maintenance Operator’s Level 3, it may be used in assessment of different technical competencies.