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Siemens PLM Connection Day 2: The Manufacturing Workforce Struggles
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“Congratulations for staying in business during an economic time that saw many of your peers business falter,” said Jane Oates, assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, during a keynote at day two of the Siemens PLM Connection 2012. Oates talked about the grants the department gives toward job training and how they are helping create a more skilled work force. She also congratulated the attendees for their part in this. “Congratulations for being smart enough for coming to this week, where under the guise of learning PLM, you get to network with each other and you get to learn.”

Jane Oates, assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration


Oates also said community colleges should be doing more in the engineering world. Since January 2012, the manufacturing industry has added 139,000 jobs in the U.S. and more businesses are keeping their jobs in the U.S.

But with all the government programs there are, Oatees said the she gets hope for the future of the industry from coming to events like Siemens PLM Connections. Speaking about a reception in the vendor hall Oates said, “I heard real exchange of how to make your business better,” She said people are not looking back but looking ahead. “After last night, I know now that the new normal is going to be positive and not something you just accept, I know now that manufacturing is going to come back.”

Siemens PLM Connection 2012 Day 2 Keynote Attendees


The exchange of ideas that Oates referred to is one of the reasons that people come to conferences like this. “It’s fantastic,” said Barbara Caligari, a Teamcenter user with Honeywell. “The first day I felt like three days had gone by, there’s just that much information here,” she said. “Meeting different people is really cool, just other users from different companies to see what they’re problems are and where they are.”

Scott Siegersma, a PLM administrator with Emerson Process Management has similar feelings. He has been to this particular conference six or seven times and has seen more and more people attending. “Networking is always a big benefit and the knowledge too, that’s what I come for. I can gain knowledge here that you won’t get by reading manuals or by going to a tech support site,” he said. “You have the experts right in front of you.”

And when people learn and engage and network things get better. Oates summed it up nicely. “This, ahead of everything else that I see, this excitement, this exchange, this fire in the belly for manufacturing gives me more hope than GDP, or Squawk Box or all the talking heads on TV,” she said. “You’re the real people doing job creation, you’re the real people dealing with international competition, and you’re the real people giving birth again to manufacturing.”
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Published 2012-05-09 00:00:00 
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