Working in the Manufacturing Sector this Summer?

The labour shortage continues to affect the manufacturing sector. More than 4,000 positions will need to be filled in 2019, according to the most recent data from the Quebec Industrial Barometer.

Recreational vehicle builder BRP in Valcourt alone is seeking 450 employees this summer, mostly full-time temporary employees for evening shifts on the assembly line.

“We are looking for welders, industrial painters and lift operators, among others,” says Carl Beauparlant, director of labour relations at BRP.

Here are four benefits of working in a factory this summer.

Attractive salaries
The work is physically demanding, since it is done while standing, admits Mr. Beauparlant. But the company offers attractive salaries, beginning at $17.53 per hour for assemblers and $19.73 per hour for a lift operator.

Less repetitive work than formerly
Factory work has evolved considerably over the last few years, remarks Carl Beauparlant.

“Five years ago, the plant produced 600 snowmobiles of the same model. Today the assembly line is sequenced, each vehicle is different,” he explains.

“Workers are confronted with 400 different configuration on the assembly line,” he continues. “They are not always installing the same equipment or the same parts, which leads to some complexity. It’s more interesting like this.”

Training
There are few skills required for positions on the assembly lines. “It takes a minimum level of manual dexterity, but for the rest training is provided,” Mr. Beauparlant notes.

In addition to providing on-site training, the company has agreements with educational institutions so that employees can reconcile factory work with studies that can lead to a career at BRP. Work-study programs in welding and mechanics are offered, in particular.

“We have made the fight against dropping out of school a responsibility,” explains Carl Beauparlant. For this reason, he prefers to hire young people from the region rather than recruiting abroad.

Future prospects

The production period extends from early June to mid-December, but the company has labour needs year-round, especially for the skilled trades.

“There may be openings, especially if the person is ready to develop,” Carl Beauparlant insists.

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