Over the last few years, companies across the United States have felt the pain related to the shortage of skilled tradespeople in their various industries. Our industry is no exception. Companies are struggling with this new paradigm and trying to fight it as best they can. Bassett Mechanical saw this as a call to action and decided to take matters into our own hands.
To combat Bassett Mechanical’s need for more Ammonia Refrigeration Engineers, Process Safety Management (PSM) Specialists, and Ammonia Service Techs, we developed the Bassett Training Academy (BTA). The mission of this program is to implement a proactive and structured training program for ammonia refrigeration to meet the current and future needs of our customers. Bassett has now completed its first full year with the program and it is an exciting addition to our quest to Create Customers for Life®.
STARTING FROM SCRATCH
We began by creating a curriculum to ensure that our academy will bring students up to a level of expertise our customers deserve and meet our Bassett standards for knowledge and quality in a more systematic and planned 3-year timeline. The curriculum creation process included contributions from our internal Bassett experts as well as evaluation of external training resources from some of the best ammonia refrigeration programs across the United States. Guidelines were generated for each level of the program and mentors were assigned for each student to ensure their success throughout their journey.
Bassett has now completed its first full year with the program and it is an exciting addition to our quest to Create Customers for Life®
UP AND RUNNING
We initially started with 3 service technicians in the program. Those 3 are currently entering their second year in the academy and 3 new students are now beginning the program. There are also 3 Process Safety Management Specialists and 2 Refrigeration Engineers who have begun their BTA curriculum.
Training takes place at outside programs across the country, on the job, in the field, in the classroom, and hands-on with the equipment. During their time as students, participants can achieve certifications that are recognized outside of our BTA program. For Service Technicians this includes RETA CIRCO certification which ensures that graduates meet all the industry requirements and certifications that our customers expect.
STUDENTS ARE EXCITED ABOUT THE NEW PROGRAM
Mentors have noticed the value of the process and feel passionate about teaching the students our Bassett standards. They are engaged in helping the students succeed and ensuring the best possible quality for our customers. Students understand the significance of this education for their professional development and are enthusiastic about the level of expertise they will gain as a result. This company investment in their education is incredibly beneficial for their individual growth, expertise, and overall lifetime career.
Here are what some of our academy participants have to say about the program:
“I have more confidence in what I do every day. I am able to apply refrigeration theory more than ever before- working smarter not harder. In our department, we now have one more tech you can count on to do the right thing.” –Michael, BTA Student
“The BTA has helped fill any knowledge gaps for the compliance specialists to prepare them for providing the level of compliance support requested from our customers.”- Ryan, PSM Services Manager and BTA Mentor/Supervisor
“For me, the BTA is providing a career development ‘roadmap’ that shows what specific skills I need to acquire to perform my current job better and the skills and training I still need to learn to make the next step in my career.” Jeff, BTA Student
The goal is that students in this program will have the exposure, skills, and knowledge to design, maintain, and troubleshoot many diverse and complex systems. The stronger knowledge and expertise we can provide, the more we can expand our products and service offerings and raise the bar for the ammonia refrigeration expertise that our customers require.
The program continues to catch momentum. Currently, the company is documenting specific internal and on-the-job content and continuing to make progress with the current students. Eventually, the company plans to expand the curriculum offerings to HVAC and other areas of the business. Bassett Mechanical is proud to do our part to combat the need for these trained professionals in our industry and guarantee the highest level of quality ammonia refrigeration service to our customers.