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Improve Safety & Hiring in the Process Industry

Your crew is getting older and, despite offering competitive pay, you’re having trouble hiring younger workers to fill the gaps. The difficulty is that these new workers avoid manual labor, which is a large part of working in process and refractory jobs. On top of that, you’re probably seeing your insurance premiums go up. Sound familiar?

Well, more challenges lie ahead. Nearly half of all workers in the U.S. are 55 or older, and it’s projected that the number of people 65 or older will grow by 236 million throughout the world between 2015 and 2025.

To stay ahead, you’ll need to find a way to retain your older workers — and keep them injury-free — longer, as well as attract young, tech-savvy crewmembers. Add in the increasing burden of workers’ compensation claims due to workplace injuries, and employers are fighting to find a solution. Not surprisingly, technology may offer relief to these problems — starting with improved safety.

More and more steel mills, foundries and refractory contractors are choosing Brokk remote-controlled demolition machines that allow workers to operate them from a safe distance. One of those many companies is Southern Refractories Inc., a refractory contractor and distributor, who bought their first Brokk machine more than 20 years ago. The results?

• Pneumatic tool use dropped by about 95 percent
• Compensation claims declined, saving tens of thousands of dollars
• Falling debris injuries virtually eliminated
• Experience modification rate, or EMR, reduced, lowering insurance premiums
• Productivity rose 50 percent
• Jobs that took as many as 12 people now require only two or three

In addition to improved safety, this new technology is a valuable tool to entice a younger workforce. Jack Kennedy, vice president at Southern Refractories, says the Brokk machines help draw in new employees and that they are naturals at using them.

Beyond appealing to younger workers, some companies are finding that remote-controlled machines can help extend older workers’ careers because they can limit the more physically demanding aspects of the work.

By choosing Brokk machines, contractors, steel mills and foundries are enticing younger workers and improving productivity while reducing injuries and claims. The resulting savings makes it easy to pay off the new equipment as well as look at additional high-tech tools.

Contact us to discuss what a machine might do for your ROI.

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