We made our first composite wet layup in 2010. In this process we realized that the growth of the composite industry has been to some extent limited due to the unavailability of skilled labor force, resulting from its specific complexity, requiring working habits, experiences and manual skills. All these tacit assets can be offered by the surplus labor force from the traditional industrial sectors, such as wooden or textile industry.
The key identified problem of the EU KA2+ project Compohub that we started in 2015 with our partners was that the Vocational Education and Training (VET) systems do not offer structured quality training programmes in the field of composite manufacturing that would reduce the existing skills mismatches.
The main innovative result of the project was a holistic training programme designed to educate, train and – consequently – properly qualify the workers in the field of composite manufacturing, which will be responsive to the identified market needs and tailored to the specific requirements of the target training group (i.e. wood cabinet makers/joiners).
The training courses were integrated in an on-line open-source learning platform CompoHUB, allowing wide exploitation and simple customization according to the different market needs.
In addition, the project trained the educators and trainers from companies and VET institutions and organized a teaching/learning mobility with a particular focus on work-based teaching.
The project was so successful within the Erasmus+ framework that it was awarded the Golden Apple (Gold quality award) for excellence.
But at AFormX we were not happy. We knew that the CompoHUB project created great training materials. Still missing was the design of a flow that would comprehensively guide the trainees through this material. Therefore we applied for a follow-up project that we named the CompoWIN. After several years of being unsuccessful, we finally received the positive news in 2020 from the national agency of Bulgaria.
While the main thread of the CompoWIN project still focused on composite materials and training in the composite industry, our goals were different this time.
The project partnership focused on developing a comprehensive, useful and unique training system for qualification and reskilling of workers in the composite industry.
The project partners jointly created the CompoWIN Training Programme incuding:
- materials for trainers,
- materials and self-evaluation forms for future composite workers to evaluate their progress in the programme, and more.
In combination with the existing on-line portal for composites on compohub.eu, these freely available resources enable organizations (i.e. SMEs, training providers, VET schools or institutions) with no previous experience with composite materials to rapidly adopt the know-how and start providing training for the composite industry.
The CompoWIN project ended in October 2022, but the project’s results are far from obsolete.
The CompoWIN training system is perfect for companies in the industry like AFormX who want to hire and train employees from day one or further qualify existing employees.
CompoWIN training system offers structure to this process. It also enables employees without any experience to get the basic knowledge and therefore progress faster on the job training.
Below is a video of AFormX CEO Sašo Knez explaining how AFormX deployed CompoWIN results in our composite workshop and how this helped our company’s rapid growth as a valued tier one subcontractor of composite parts in the composite industry.