By Eric Lanke, NFPA President/CEO
Last week, I went to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for the Council of Manufacturing Associations’ (CMA) leadership conference, held in conjunction with the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). As a CMA Board Director, these meetings give me the opportunity to connect with other association presidents and CEOs in the manufacturing industry, which can, and has, opened doors for NFPA partnerships.
During the conference, Jay Timmons, CEO of NAM, spoke about the recent tax reform package and the possible implications it could have on manufacturing businesses. Prior to the bill’s passing in December 2017, NAM surveyed its membership asking what their businesses will do if the bill did indeed pass. Specifically, what would they do with their extra tax savings?
The positive responses NAM received indicated that their manufacturers would buy new equipment, hire new talent, increase salaries/benefits, etc. Now that the bill has become law, Jay has essentially issued a challenge to his members. To show that those intentions were real, it’s important for manufacturers to start moving forward with those plans.
Listening to Jay speak prompted me to ask myself: What will NFPA members do with any tax savings they now receive? Will they follow the same suit as the surveyed NAM members? Will NFPA members upgrade their equipment and expand their facilities? Will they hire more people to work in the fluid power industry? And if so, where will they find the talent they need?
And that got me thinking about the NFPA Education and Technology Foundation. How many of these members are aware that the NFPA Foundation is working hard to create more educated fluid power technicians and engineers, and then connect them to NFPA members so that they can find rewarding fluid power careers? Do they know that our Foundation’s workforce development programs have the power to bring two-year and four-year engineering students directly to them, allowing them greater access to the kind of candidates they are looking for?
Workforce development is crucial to NFPA’s mission of strengthening the fluid power industry. Our Foundation is here to help our members develop and find the talent they need to keep their business growing in an ever-changing world.
If you are interested in learning more, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (414) 778-3351.