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Quality Digest


NIMS Offers ‘Smart Standards’

New industry-recognized guidelines for manufacturing jobs

Published: Wednesday, May 17, 2023 - 11:58

(NIMS: Fairfax, VA) -- The National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) has announced a new suite of Smart Standards for various job roles in various sectors of manufacturing. These standards are a starting point for any employer and educator developing or evaluating training in these disciplines. Specifically, the new standards are categorized under the disciplines of Industry 4.0, industrial maintenance technology, dimensional measurements, additive manufacturing, machining, and metalforming. Click here to view each role and the various duties ascribed to each.

Smart Standards are part of NIMS Smart Training Solutions, an innovative framework for modernizing training to keep up with the pace of emerging technologies and building solid connections between employers and educators. They are “smart” because while all of the duties a given role comprises are written, mapped, and agreed upon by subject-matter experts in the industry, each employer and each educational institution can build their own job roles with any combination of duties, depending on their specific needs. For example, employers can select from a repository of industry duties that make a “maintenance technician” or “CNC operator” based on how their company assigns duties. Regardless of how employers build job roles, they are standardized because standardization is at the duty level, not the role.

“That’s the benefit of the Smart Standards framework,” says Montez King, executive director of NIMS. “It’s flexible, it’s modular, and the standards can be dynamically updated as industries change. No longer is occupational training dictated by someone in government or a small group of industry people deciding what someone must do or know to be aligned to industry standards. We’ve standardized the duties themselves so that an employer can create customized roles and a training program based on the company’s actual workplace activities.”

NIMS is now offering the free Interactive Standards Viewer, and there is also a subscription version that allows employers and educational institutions to specifically customize roles in a matter of minutes with the Role Builder Module. According to NIMS, several additional modules will be rolled out over the next several months. They are Performance Measure Developer, OJT Tracker, Evaluator and Visualization Tool, and OJT Detector. Details about each will be provided as they come online.

For more information, contact NIMS at (844) 839–6467 or visit the website, www.nims-skills.org.


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For 40 years Quality Digest has been the go-to source for all things quality. Our newsletter, Quality Digest, shares expert commentary and relevant industry resources to assist our readers in their quest for continuous improvement. Our website includes every column and article from the newsletter since May 2009 as well as back issues of Quality Digest magazine to August 1995. We are committed to promoting a view wherein quality is not a niche, but an integral part of every phase of manufacturing and services.