Information on the mechanization of agriculture, gardening, components and multifunctionality.

Mech@griJOBS: the emerging professions in agro-mechanics

The demand of highly specialized figures in agro-mechanics is increasing. According to Enama and Unacma (the National Union of the Farm Machinery Dealers), in the next three-year period there will be a potential job offer of 3,000 works but the educational paths are not always appropriate for the production chain's demands. Mech@griJOBS was promoted with the aim of illustrating to the youth the opportunities for employment in this sector

by Fabrizio Sereni
october/november 2013 | Back

"Mechatronics workers", expert technicians with a knowledge of machine languages, "2.0" salespeople: in agro-mechanical production's chain the demand for highly specialized professional workers is on the rise. In fact, a survey by Unacma and Agrilevante shows that, in the next three-year period the sector could generate a demand of 3,000 new jobs, 250 of which in Puglia and Basilicata. Much depends on the evolution of the actual positive trend for the export, but not for the domestic demand. Nevertheless, opposite to this potential – as Gianni Di Nardo, Unacma Secretary-General highlighted – the training programme of the Italian school system is not in line with the production chain's demands. For this reason, Enama and Unacma, during Bari's exhibition, promoted Mech@griJOBS, an authentic forum on agro-mechanics' new professions.

This initiative was sponsored not only with the purpose to promote the meeting between students and enterprises, but also to involve the students of Puglia in educational paths in line with agro-mechanics' demands. "A dynamic sector is able to create job opportunities and our sector, despite the market crisis, is dynamic. The fact has been confirmed by a substantial increase of the export in 2013" Sandro Liberatori, the Director of Enama, said during the presentation of Mech@griJOBS to the press.

"But it is essential, most of all for the young who approach the world of work, to know what to expect from the opportunities offered by the production chain" - the Director of the National Authority for Agricultural Mechanization added – and Enama, together with Unacma started from this consideration, choosing a direct contact with the young. "To these young people we explained which are and will be the most "popular" professional competences in the future of agro-mechanics, and what to do to let these opportunities become real".

High-tech positions
In this context, the primary sector in general and agro-mechanics in particular lived, under the influence of technological innovation, a deep transformation. Several factors brought to the launch of new profiles, such as the exploit of renewable energies, the "boom" of robotics in electronics and mechatronics, the increasing importance of multifunctionality and the increasing automation in agriculture. Such is the case of specialized technicians with a knowledge of machine language and communication systems between engines and machines, of mechatronics workers who develop specific solutions that draw together mechanics, information technology and electronics or of the experts in agroenergies. "Besides the fact of giving value to these professional roles, high-tech agriculture changed deeply the "traditional" roles" – Gianni di Nardo, Unacoma Secretary General, said – .

"An example being the dealers, who became real purchase assistants with such a deep and specific knowledge of machines' technologies to be able to suggest customers those machines with technical features that best fit their demands. I am also thinking about mechanics who are able to operate on very complex work instruments, in which mechanics, electronics and information technology coexist. Today the production chain offers important job opportunities but the real match will be played on a long-term period. The increase of world population and so the global demand of food in view of limited resources, will lead to an increasingly sustainable and efficient agriculture" – Liberatori added –."At this level the new professions can raise the bar of productivity".

Enama and Unacma are working for the future of agriculture
Mech@griJOBS is giving the first contribution to the rationalisation of job market in the agro-mechanical sector: this is the first of a series of initiatives that will put to work Enama and Unacma in the following months and years. In fact, in the next future the Dealers Association of Agricultural Machinery will set a programme of educational initiatives directed both to professional development (compliance of machinery, respect of safety regulations, revisions, licenses) and value of human resources (marketing courses, sales techniques, team building and leadership).

Enama too has put education in the centre of the attention, by linking it with certification, an important basis for the Association. "These issues are connected to each other" – Liberatori concluded – "because in the next future the primary sector in the world will need increasingly efficient and innovative machinery and professional figures capable of interfacing with new work instruments. Not all the machines have these features, but only those responding to specific technological and normative requirements. These requirements are a garantee of quality, safety and reliability for the entire agro-mechanical production chain".


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