Johnson Controls Leverages APICS to Build Award-Winning Learning System

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Is your learning system addressing skill gaps?

APICS Milwaukee Chapter serves the supply chain community with education and information needed to compete in today’s world.

Certainly not new news to supply chain leaders that a skill gap exists. Deloitte had calculated 4.6 million job openings in the manufacturing sector from 2018-2028 and predicted that only 2.2 million of those would be filled.

Johnson Controls worked with Association Supply Chain Management and leveraged the APICS body of knowledge to build an award-winning learning system to help close their skill gap summarized below.

A key feature of the Johnson Controls platform is supply chain excellence, which describes the company’s journey to achieving a world-class supply chain. By advancing its people, processes, technology and metrics with APICS education, Johnson Controls leaders are enabling this excellence while driving positive customer experiences and superior business results. In fact, the initiative has been so successful that Johnson Controls earned the 2017 APICS Corporate Award of Excellence — Education.

“The supply chain excellence vision is about having a single Johnson Controls way of designing, integrating and optimizing end-to-end, demand-driven value chains to attain a sustainable competitive advantage for our customers and shareholders,” says Lynn Ross, supply chain academy leader, manufacturing excellence for Johnson Controls. The strategy is based on a set of structured, unified, and integrated activities and resources that create a culture of learning and excellence. Specific focus areas include:

  1. The transformation of operations, management infrastructure, and mindsets and behaviors
  2. A maturity model framework consisting of strategy, planning, execution,
  3. Compliance and empowered people
  4. The enabling capabilities of performance, technology and systems, and integration and collaboration
  5. Supporting documents such as policies, standards and guidelines that describe the expectations for how to achieve excellence

Johnson Controls decision-makers sought to create a solid supply chain maturity model that would be linked to operational performance based on standard processes and metrics. They chose to achieve this goal by building a strategic partnership with APICS.

To address limitations surrounding awareness of what supply chain is, an overview e-learning course was produced to be used as a baseline. The course provides connections among supply chain networks, maturity models and the basic knowledge of how a supply chain network influences all functions within the company. Ross says the academy also enables employees to better understand their job functions, the skills required to perform their roles successfully and the relevant principles. “APICS is an integral part of mapping training to roles,” she adds.

Ricardo Estok, global manufacturing operations council, principle leader, Johnson Controls, says employee confidence also has increased as more people achieve APICS certification. “All the requirements on both knowledge and applied skills are effectively in place to perform in the subject matter for which employees are certified,” he says. “Certification programs enable our organization to leverage one standard way of applied subject matter expertise to improve performance.”

As Johnson Controls employees journey through APICS programs, the academy measures the outcomes. Ross explains that this is comprised of the completion ratios of assigned learning, measuring how employees are applying the education to their roles and coaching and mentoring others. “This life cycle assures the content is relevant to our employees, is measurable and remains aligned to gap closures,” Ross says.

Looking for more information on APICS body of knowledge? APICS Milwaukee is offering expert-led instructor classes starting in January for our globally recognized supply chain certifications! Learn more…