23 Apr 2020
LARA magazine speaks to AJW Technique CEO, Sajedah Rustom about how we prepare task-ready technicians.
Modern maintenance training aims to equip personnel with all-round skills ready for the workplace. Bernie Baldwin speaks to AJW Technique’s CEO, Sajedah Rustom, and reports on how AJW is realising that goal.
One of the safeguards for any company’s business is a well-trained workforce. This is especially important, of course, when there is a high level of the mission criticality related to the final product; certainly the case for every aircraft maintenance technician and engineer.
The sophistication and complexity of modern aircraft demands training to match. Moreover, with studies in human behaviour also developing, training is not just about what is being taught, but also how it is being taught.
Based at a 220,000 square foot facility in Montreal, Canada, AJW Technique is the global hub for AJW Group’s repair activities. Its CEO, Sajedah Rustom, highlights the ‘what’ element of the company’s training. “We focus on both quality control and quality assurance. Through our On-The-Job training programme, we cover process tools and hundreds of hours on aircraft components to ensure that the strict standards are met and surpassed. The programme is Transport Canada-approved and allows every qualified technician to receive an airworthiness certificate on every unit they have worked on,” she remarks.
As for recent enhancements, AJW Technique has recently added new courses which range from a 5S [workplace optimisation elements: sort, set-in-order, shine, standardise and sustain], to first aid, to soldering. “Also, on a quarterly basis, our Training Committee (which oversees the certification of all new qualifications) reviews performance levels and provides feedback and recommendations on evolving the training programme to ensure that AJW is always ahead of industry requirements.”
“Our On-The-Job training programme is conducted as a Buddy Programme,” Rustom points out. “It begins in the classroom where all computer skills, processes and safety training are completed early on in a 20-hour module. After that, all trainees spend practical hours in the workshop where they are paired with senior, experienced technicians. This allows them to work in real-time on components and learn and develop under close supervision.
“Our programme encourages and builds a sense of community and allows trainees to be exposed to real-time hands-on experience instead of merely a curated classroom/workshop module.”
“We strongly believe that cross-training will create flexible and agile technicians who can execute their tasks in varying environments. We ensure that every technician is empowered to diversify their skills as part of their personal development plan. This commitment has enabled AJW Technique to rotate skillsets based on cell demand.”
Portability and self-pacing are clearly functions that many want in their training tools. Sajedah reports that all the company’s training modules have been migrated to its intranet, thus allowing technicians to plan their continuous training at their own rate. “They are also empowered to upgrade and develop their skills and learn new ones that interest them,” she adds.
“Internally, we have developed software that simulates mock-ups of our maintenance electronic systems and databases to boost computer skillsets. This allows trainees to test their skills, make mistakes and continuously learn from them. “Our resource planning team considers the development and training opportunities for every technician. We ensure every technician is rotated through different cell units to encourage them to build skills across the board rather than having a few niche skills,” Sajedah explains.
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