By Jeff Gilbert

WARREN (WWJ) – Chrysler showing off a new high tech training center on Tuesday that aims to transform the way the company builds cars and trucks.

WWJ AutoBeat Reporter Jeff Gilbert explains that the new World Class Manufacturing (WCM) Academy is extremely high-tech.

You’ll find virtual reality glasses that immerse the worker in certain situations but it’s also low-tech using Lego blocks and slot cars in some demonstrations.  The goal is to improve quality, cut costs companywide and to provide cutting edge technology for workers to rethink the way they do things.

Chrysler manufacturing chief Scott Gaberding says the auto maker wants to get the workers more involved in problem solving.

“It’s based on a belief that if you help people learn how to analyze and how to make changes – you are in effect giving them news eyes and those new eyes give them a way to new see new things themselves,” said Gaberding.

UAW vice president General Holiefield says anything that improves a workers skill set is job security.

“You can not negotiate job security they are going to have to earn it – and the way they are going to earn it, with one of the tools would be through WCM,” said Holiefield.

Occupying about 25,000-square-feet of the UAW-Chrysler Technology Training Center, the Academy’s mission is to transfer WCM “know-how” to more than 1,200 participants each year.


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