SME, a nationally recognized manufacturing certification body, today announced that it has developed and will offer the Robotics in Manufacturing Fundamentals (RMF) credential.
The new certification, which focuses on assessing a candidate’s understanding of fundamental robotics concepts, can be used by those currently looking to upgrade or transition into manufacturing careers before undergoing specific training at equipment or robotics career path.
The title can help individuals start a lifelong career in an industry where there are opportunities for advancement and high-paying jobs.
The industry-recognized RMF credential was developed by SME, along with two leading organizations in robotics education: the Robotics Education & Competition Foundation and FIRST.
Jeannine Kunz, Director of Workforce Development, SME and member of the Education and Workforce Advisory Board of ARM, the Robotics Institute, says: “Thanks to our extensive networks across industry, education and the workforce, the SME has identified a common need for a robotics degree that demonstrates certification holders have a basic understanding of robotics concepts before starting a program more advanced training.
“We have worked closely with the REC Foundation and FIRST to validate the body of knowledge to cover topics relevant to fundamental robotics topics across a wide range of industries.”
The RMF credential, which focuses on the fundamentals of manufacturing robotics, provides a starting point for any career path a candidate may pursue in the field of robotics.
Kunz says, “The global robotics market is expected to reach $74 billion by 2026 and there are huge opportunities for those looking to advance their careers.
“For our industry to continue to thrive, we must help meet the strong demand for advanced manufacturing and robotics talent in our country.”
With an RMF credential and the foundational knowledge it represents, a candidate has many options available to them, including:
- Entry-level employment in manufacturing jobs that involve robotics and automation
Pursue your studies and train to:
- Robotics-specific career path, such as robotics technician, robotics specialist, robotics integrator, or robotics engineer
Equipment-specific robotics training and certification
- Skilled trade in which robots can be applied, such as machining or welding
- Industrial or mechatronics maintenance certification
Chris Rake, COO, FIRST, says, “It is important for FIRST to recognize the great value of the skills and experiences that students gain through robotics programs.
“The RMF designation opens up exciting career paths, helping us inspire young people to become leaders in robotics and advanced manufacturing, and we are proud to join SME in developing this program.”
The RMF credential is ideal for high school and college students, displaced workers, the underemployed, veterans, at-risk youth, and others seeking new employment in high-demand manufacturing jobs. request.
Dan Mantz, CEO of the REC Foundation, said, “The REC Foundation is pleased to partner with SME to create the Robotics in Manufacturing Fundamentals certification to recognize students pursuing careers in Industry 4.0 technology.
“Manufacturing is changing and today’s manufacturing jobs require high-tech skills. But there is a critical shortage of technical workers for these jobs, so students who earn this certification will have excellent career opportunities.
“The Robotics in Manufacturing Fundamentals certification is an exciting addition to the existing REC Foundation industry certifications in pre-engineering and robotics that are part of our workforce development initiatives.”
SME has led the manufacturing industry in providing industry-recognized certifications for over 50 years, including Lean Certification, Additive Manufacturing Certification, Certified Manufacturing Associate (CMfgA), Manufacturing Technologist Certified (CMfgT) and Certified Manufacturing Engineer (CMfgE).
Candidates can pursue RMF certification on their own, work with their local training provider, or access Tooling U-SME resources to prepare for the exam.
U-SME Tooling offers an optional preparatory program of 22 online courses covering fundamental manufacturing topics such as an introduction to manufacturing, applied mathematics, robot applications, robot systems and components, robot programming concepts , etc. – topics agreed by manufacturing experts as being relevant to basic robotics knowledge across a wide range of industries. At the end of the training program, passing the certification exam validates the knowledge acquired.
With each course around 60 minutes, the training program can be completed in a few weeks (usually less than a month) or in one semester as part of an introductory robotics course at school, offering a short-term but comprehensive preparation. for the certification exam.
With the prospect of over 2 million jobs expected to go unfilled due to a lack of skilled workers, there are plenty of opportunities for career advancement.
In addition, employees are more open than ever in the field. According to the ARM Institute, 77% of workers say they would be happy to work alongside robotics in manufacturing if it meant having to perform fewer manual processes.