10 Ways TWI Supports Employee Engagement and Retention

Workforce challenges these days are never-ending, not just for manufacturers but across the business spectrum. You have to be on top of your game to be successful building a talent pipeline, recruiting and hiring, onboarding and training, creating an engaging workplace culture, and promoting career development. Leadership skills in manufacturing are paramount, as is the ever-present need for standardized training. The turnover of experienced leaders and other subject matter experts only amplifies that need.

You may have an old standby in your workforce toolbox that addresses manufacturing-specific issues while also arming your new leaders with skills to meet current workforce challenges. Training Within Industry (TWI) has been around since the 1940s, and it is designed to expand supervisor knowledge in ways that help your business drive continuous improvement. For instance, the idea of Lean manufacturing has roots in TWI.

TWI emerged during World War II as American manufacturers struggled to meet the crushing demand for all manner of military-related products. As farmers, office workers and others made their way into factories in support of the effort, there was an urgent need to enable these new workers to transition into new roles. In many ways, we have a similar environment now as manufacturers must reach out to nontraditional talent pools to fill vacant positions. It’s a good time to take another look at TWI, which provides workforce benefits far beyond standards for work.

This NIST blog post, authored by VMEC’s Phil Chadderdon, will focus on how two elements of TWI – job relations (JR) and job instruction (JI) – impact engagement and retention. Read the complete story here.