Posted at 01 June 2021

Power is Knowledge: Virtually improving your skillset

Paul Skade
By Richard Ludlam
Marketing Manager

Intrigued by all things engineering, as a youngster I originally looked to understand how things work then, how to make them work better.

After time in eng...

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Every year we grow even more complacent with our skillsets and expertise, in fact, the average skilled person with 20 years’ experience is several years behind in skill despite years of training and qualifications achieved.


With technology developing daily, it’s essential to keep your workforce up to date with latest training and skills, and that’s exactly why ERIKS not only identified the need to further develop our internal teams, but those of our customers by offering a range of Web-Based training courses, specifically designed around Rotating Equipment Performance (REP), SKF Bearing Lifecycle, and Maintenance Assessments.


The main driver behind this decision was to support our customers’ apprentices with training, whilst colleges and universities remained closed throughout the multiple lockdown periods. So, why?... well, 37% of customers identified a skills gap in the industry, at a significant cost of and estimated £1.5 billion each year.

The ERIKS philosophy

At ERIKS, we believe that for industry to truly evolve, we need to build for the future. We understand that the present is extremely important, but we mustn’t neglect what the future has to hold. It’s this foresight that will start to blaze the way for our budding engineers of the future. Engage now and industry as a whole will reap the benefits – ‘Let’s Make Industry Better”

Partaking in multiple online training courses delivered on Microsoft Teams, we decided that, in majority, the virtual delivery of some information wasn’t suitable for this method of learning. 

Working closely with our key supply partner SKF, we identified an opportunity to improve this process and embarked on a journey to create a detailed training schedule that would enable our young apprentices to gain the benefits of decades of knowledge and expertise in bearings.

The aim

The goal of these virtual training courses was to achieve best practice knowledge and a better understanding of the tools and mechanisms available, receiving support from both ERIKS and SKF on a day-to-day basis.


Each webinar was designed to cover one facet of Bearing Lifecycle, providing support and understanding surrounding the significance of good maintenance practices, and the impact that this has on bearing failure modes. Our message here was simple…. Best Maintenance Practice will always improve Rotating Equipment Reliability.

The extensive scope of training included:

  • SKF Bearing Lifecycle
  • Mounting & Dismounting
  • Alignment
  • Lubrication
  • Condition Monitoring
  • Maintenance Assessment consisting of apprentice feedback on plant reliability and physical assessment reporting

The outcome

Initially aimed at those in education or apprentice level, we quickly found that Engineering Managers, Reliability Engineers, and Workshop Managers with years of experience were in attendance, realising that even with their experience, what they were once taught may not necessarily be the best way any longer.

For example, a few of the post-training comments included: “I can’t believe we’ve been doing that wrong since I started,” “I didn’t know that was an option’” or “We use a 125ml single point lubricator, so should we use a different type for a 300mm bearing.”

Receiving this type of feedback just goes to show that regardless of experience there’s always something new to learn, and more importantly, people are ready and willing to learn – as the saying goes ‘the future is looking bright.’

There’s more to come

At ERIKS, we believe that best practice improves reliability and increases productivity, whilst enhancing the skillset of your workforce, and this is just one example of several courses offered and facilitated by ERIKS specialists.

Education is essential for both growth and stability, and ERIKS, in partnership with many of your favourite suppliers, are excited to announce that we have many more apprentice training courses in the pipeline for 2021, covering a range of other topic areas including pumps and maintenance products. Watch this space!

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