With growing investments in infrastructure and real estate, the demand for painting and coating has increased significantly. Government’s Smart Cities Mission, along with a rising number of households, hospitals, offices, schools, and increasing purchasing power has contributed towards this growth. However, the painting and coating industry still faces the challenge of a skilled workforce.
Though painting seems to be a superficial activity, there are many aspects that need to be looked into. Paints not only differ in terms of colour but also in terms of texture, lustre, viscosity, and drying time. A bad painting and coating might result in peeling, cracking, and washing away of the paint from surfaces.
Training challenges of Painting
Though painting and coating are part of many industries and sectors, it is still highly informal. Painting is not given enough importance like it should be given. Today any person knowing how to hold a brush is thought of as a painter. Therefore, making most of the workforce in the field of painting and coating in India as unskilled or semi-skilled. But the changing nature of work and industry requirements with advancements in technology and the use of digital tools calls for a highly skilled workforce. A good coating requires surface preparation, coating specification, coating inspection and application of skills. Here, the application of skills becomes the weakest link. This is where good training and imparting of skills play an important role.
Different categories of the painting are decorative painting, automotive painting, and industrial painting. Decorative painting is something that is done inside the buildings like our homes, offices, schools, etc. In India, we mostly use brush and rollers in some cases. However, the approach worldwide is changing. Paint companies and contractors are using spray paint across the world. Because it is more efficient, faster and can be very useful in accomplishing large projects. It is proven that spray painting is three times faster than roller painting. Though spray painting is not very popular in India, it is growing very fast and it is a skill one needs to learn to survive in this industry in the future.
The next sector which uses the painting extensively is the automotive sector. There are training companies specifically set up to train the youth for the automotive sector. Next comes the industrial painting. It is for shipyards, oil and gas industries, chemical factories, etc. The objective of painting in industries is to prevent the materials from corrosion.
All of these sectors require different and specific skill sets. Therefore, making mobility difficult between these sectors. But it is the spray painting that is common across all these sectors. Therefore, many training providers, institutions and Paint companies are adopting simulator-based spray-painting training. With the skill of spray painting and simulator-based training, it is possible for the workforce to move upwards and earn better through effective training.
How simulators can address the training challenge?
Currently, leading painting training centres run by companies like Berger Paints, Asian Paints and automotive companies like Hyundai and Kia Motors use simulators to train youngsters in spray painting for their after-sales service needs. Simulator-based painting training trains the students in trigger timing, gun angles, travel speed, stroke overlap, and gun distance. Several industries like automotive, chemical, decorative, etc. would benefit from the use of simulators. Simulators evaluate objectively and train the students in the effective application of skills. It greatly reduces the time to train, saves consumables and thereby saving health and environment.
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Simulator-integrated training makes the students achieve better, lets the trainer measure the quality in lesser time, reduces defects in actual jobs, delivers training in spaces that might be difficult due to the constraint of space and time. It is high time Indian training centres and training providers adopt simulator-based painting training, to produce quality and skilled workforce and lead the market worldwide.
We at Skillveri strongly recommends adding spray painting training to existing construction painting training centres who are currently teaching only brush and roller painting. Training partners/centres can start with decorative and automotive initially and then move to industrial painting later. This will be an up-skilling option for the workforce, which will help to move upward in socio-economic mobility. The use of simulators in training will create a pool of highly skilled workforce who make lesser mistakes which means the lesser cost of replacement or rework. Painting and Coating Skills Council (PCSC) and National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) approved training increases the credibility of the painter and of the contractor and employer too.
Guest Author: Sabarinath C Nair, Founder – CEO, Skillveri Training Solutions Pvt Ltd.
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