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Temporaries come to the machine professions.

Time was when "temporary help" meant a secretary, typist, or word processor. But a slow-growing economy and employer reluctance to add full-time staff have resulted in increasing use of "temps" in engineering, technical, and management positions.

Another profession that has experienced growth in demand for temporary workers is the machine tool industry. Advanced Technology Services Inc (ATS), based in Owosso, MI, specializes in placing qualified machine tool trade technicians--including operators, setup personnel, machine tool electricians, maintenance people, and other skilled and less-skilled positions--in long-term temporary assignments. ATS president Bryan Adamski, a journey-man toolmaker with 17 years of experience, says he sees a big need for professional skilled labor. "The machine tool profession is dying, and for the US to be in the competitive situation we're in and be facing a shortage of skilled labor is something we have to do something about. However technology evolves, you're going to need skilled people to build it up to that standard. Michigan, for example, is a leader in demand for skilled labor, but the skills are still dying here," he says. ATS clients are mainly large companies, such as first-tier automotive suppliers. But Mr Adamski says the service is designed for anyone who needs experienced machine tool professionals who can make an immediate positive impact on business.

"What my clients need is a job done right, right now. They're looking for someone skilled. For example, if they're looking for a CNC operator, they want the person to be able to walk up to a machine, get an introduction, then be able to run it. We're talking about professional people these companies don't have to train."

The temporaries are ATS employees, and the fact that clients are relieved of the burden of hiring full-time staff and administering payroll and benefits is one of the reasons companies contact ATS, says Mr Adamski. Still, there have been instances where ATS employees have stayed on as full-time hires, he adds. "There's a certain percentage that stay at the company. Every now and then, a company will love an employee, and they will hire him/her. I'll let that person go, and I'll keep putting other people in there that they can screen. This is a screening process for potential employees."

Mr Adamski does his own screening of candidates, testing and interviewing to classify them according to his own system and match employees with the company and the job opening.

Right now, he says, business is good. ATS currently has more potential openings in companies around the country than employees. Mr Adamski says candidates are machine trades professionals who may be unemployed or underemployed or simply interested in making a change.

"For example, for a CNC operator/setup position, I'm looking for people who went through the schooling but can't find a job. There are a lot of people in that situation. I'm also looking for people who know what they're doing, have done the job, but are dissatisfied where they're at," says Mr Adamski.

ATS also has a program for machinist's helpers and people who aren't yet up to journeyman status, as well as classifications for general labor, custodial help, electricians, maintenance people, and office personnel. Mr Adamski is working on developing training for ATS employees and expects to have programs in place soon to help employees upgrade their skills.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Nelson Publishing
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Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Tooling & Production
Date:Aug 1, 1993
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