WorldWide Drilling Resource

30 OCTOBER 2022 WorldWide Drilling Resource® Why HDD Training Courses Are Important for the Workforce Adapted from Information by Melfred Borzall For trenchless contractors having a rough time finding workers, it might seem like there aren’t enough good horizontal directional drilling (HDD) operators out there. On the other hand, for people looking to get into the industry, it may feel like there aren’t a lot of companies willing to invest in them. It’s unfortunate on both ends because contractors are likely missing out on strong candidates who are willing to work hard and learn, while job seekers are missing out on opportunities to develop solid skill sets for bright futures in HDD. But there is one way to improve both sides of this equation - HDD training. The HDD industry is projected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 13.2% per year until at least 2025. The growing demand for environmental preservation and minimal public inconvenience while completing infrastructure projects is predicted to boost the demand for HDD services, as well. Contractors need to be ready to take on new business ventures, like locating specific natural resources and burying lines or pipes in the toughest terrain. Since technology is always changing, experienced operators must stay up-to-date with the latest equipment and procedures. That’s where HDD training may be the deciding factor between success and failure. It can help contractors and workers develop industry-relevant knowledge and strengthen their skills so they’re equipped to handle whatever comes their way on the jobsite. When the entire team is set up for success, a company can truly thrive. For those who want to start offering - or attending - regular training sessions, trade organizations like the North American Society for Trenchless Technology (NASTT), companies like Associated Training Services, or even certain equipment manufacturers offer indepth courses on a number of subjects including HDD safety, equipment maintenance, and operating procedures. Offering on-the-job training opportunities not only shows a company is committed to strengthening its employees’ skills, but also that it truly values its workforce. When operators and other field personnel feel valued, they’re much more likely to stick around. Another benefit for contractors is regular HDD training provides ways for them to learn about new innovations to help their companies work smarter, safer, and more efficiently. By seeing the latest equipment or drilling techniques in action, they get a better sense of what is out there and how it can improve the way they do business. When companies use up-to-date equipment and standard operating procedures, it stands out to both prospective candidates and current employees. Whether someone is new to the industry or has been part of an HDD crew for years, they can always use tips and tricks to help strengthen a range of skills related to their role. HDD is a fast-paced industry, and with the tremendous growth expected over the next few years, those who can’t keep up could be left behind. HDD training courses are a necessity. In an industry where it’s sometimes hard to find qualified workers, it only makes sense to retain the ones a company has by ensuring they are well-educated and fully capable of fulfilling their roles. Over time, workers will appreciate it. By receiving regular training, they’ll know their employer is committed to them - and committed to helping them drill toward successful careers in the industry. DIR