Swedish maintenance industry looks boldly to the future
The Swedish Maintenance Society (SVUH) celebrated its 50th birthday in 2019. For the Society it is important to remain at the forefront of the maintenance industry, and to overcome the challenges of the time stronger than ever.
The maintenance sector in Sweden is of a high level by international standards. The aim of the Society is to grow the Swedish maintenance industry evermore and to maintain a high and up-to-date level of activity.
According to Mia Ilkko, Chair of the Swedish Maintenance Society, the number of members of the Society is approaching 150.
The members are from the fields of industry, education, suppliers of goods and services, and authorities.
– Regarding attracting people to the maintenance sector as employees, we know it can be challenging. We first need to be much clearer on how we explain this maintenance sector, its possibilities and the different roles in a career within maintenance.
We as a society, have a lot we can do in communication on different levels, Mia says.
Raising awareness of the sector is also necessary in terms of access to labour. Both Mia and Maria Stockefors, CEO of SVUH, consider it one of the biggest challenges today to attract more employees to the maintenance sector and secure its competence.
– When not knowing the profession, we do not get many students in maintenance education. Maria claims.
– However, with intensified cooperation with educational institutions, we are turning the tide. Moreover, with the development of technology, there is a higher degree of analytics within Sweden’s maintenance sector. This is creating different types of positions within companies, Mia adds.
Competence development is an important task of the Society
Members of SVUH come from a wide range of fields, such as industry, education, service and product suppliers. Maria sees the different backgrounds and competences of its members as a strength of the Society and as factors offering new perspectives.
– In the development of competence, it is important to be aware of what kind of skills will be needed in the maintenance industry in the future. For example, achieving climate goals requires new technological solutions, which in turn require new technical ways of working," Mia says.
Internal committees have been set up within the association, in which the members are responsible for taking forward the message in various areas: competence development, safety, health and the environment, standardization, the future of maintenance.
For example, professionals in the field of technology bring know-how related to sustainable development and recycling, and service providers bring their expertise in, among other things, methods, and aids for preventive maintenance.
– In addition, the education sector, such as universities, universities of applied sciences and technical colleges, is interested in cooperating with the maintenance field in the form of various research and development projects, Maria adds.
The association is like a window into Swedish maintenance activities, which are opened in both national and international contexts. Mia says that the Society participates both in domestic and foreign conferences and events, where it is possible to meet representatives of the maintenance sector extensively. The Society also has a long history of working in development projects with other fellow European societies.
– In this way, we can increase our own awareness of work elsewhere and gain a new perspective on the development of the field.
• The Swedish maintenance association Utek was founded on September 30th, 1969. In 2012, Utek merged with another Swedish maintenance organization and the name was changed to the Swedish Maintenance Society (SVUH).
• For SVUH it is important to be caught up in current time and therefore the vision of the association follows time closely. Currently SVUH considers its vision to provide an internationally competitive, reliable industry through high-quality maintenance.
Text: Tarja Rannisto
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