Food and beverage manufacturing professionals aspiring to a career in the industry will incorporate continuous professional development activities into their progress plans.
“Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is the term used to describe the learning activities professionals engage in to develop and enhance their abilities. Engaging in Continuing Professional Development ensures that both academic and practical qualifications do not become out-dated or obsolete; allowing individuals to continually ‘upskill’ or ‘re-skill’ themselves, regardless of occupation, age or educational level” (CPD certification service).
In the food and beverage manufacturing and processing industries, theory and knowledge need to be accompanied by practical application to ensure food safety compliance and avoid accidental injury.
The Widening Skills Gap in Food and Beverage Manufacturing and Processing
“Ensuring Sustainable Employment and Competitiveness in the EU Food and Drink Industry: Meeting the Challenges of the Labour Market”1 (2013) reported the findings of a market research study into the food and drink manufacturing and processing labour market across the European Union.
The research found:
- An ageing workforce with a shortage of workers to replace those retiring, highlighting the need to develop those in production roles to enable progression into technical or managerial positions
- The rate of innovation in processing technologies means site engineers, managers and technologists will require “precise knowledge” on the systems and technologies they are supporting. This is of particular importance “where public safety depends upon achieving the necessary degree of microbiological skill”.
- Labour productivity could be improved by improving the basic skills and knowledge of specific methods of production.
Similarly, the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Resource Challenges Report, commissioned by Sealed Air, found “with the exponential changes in technology, the need for skilled employees has never been higher or more specialised...There is an incredible focus right now on human capital as a value-appreciating resource”2.
With an ageing workforce approaching retirement in the next 20 years, a variety of career paths and promotion opportunities for food and beverage manufacturing professionals are appearing, such as moving cross-functionally and transfering skills to another role within the same company.
E-learning from the Diversey Hygiene Academy
Site engineers, managers and technologists require precise knowledge on the systems and technologies they are supporting
Advancements in internet connectivity have accelerated the growth of eLearning solutions and their use in continuous professional development. One such solution is the Diversey Hygiene Academy, a cloud-based learning environment of training courses developed specifically to improve the knowledge and skillsets of food and beverage manufacturing and processing professionals.
The bite-size training modules are available on an enterprise company licence or can be purchased via PayPal by individuals as part of their own development plans. They have been developed in line with industry standards while leveraging our experience of being a leader in food safety hygiene solutions. Delivered online to enable flexible learning, the outcome is improved work-related skills and knowledge of techniques required to progress to the next career stage.
The Safe Handling and Application of Detergents and Disinfectants module is provided free of charge. Other courses include Principles of Hygiene and Sanitation and Microbiology for Food and Beverage Plants.
All courses have been certified by the CPD certification service.
The Hygiene Academy is part of the Diversey Knowledge-based Service portfolio.
2 Eva Sage-Gavin, former CHRO of The Gap and current senior adviser at the Boston Consulting Group in San Francisco.