HRM and skills development - August 2019

05 September 2019

US packaging salaries in IoPP 2019 survey
Packaging World reports on the IoPP survey 2019 of US packaging professionals regarding their salaries, The results show that older pros with higher salaries are beginning to exit the workforce. Millennials – still predominantly male - take over with job security and optimism about future earnings in their mind.

Specialised degrees in packaging needed to solve sustainability challenges
A Packaging Insights article based on a range of interviews with educational and professional specialists, addresses the usefulness of specialised degrees in packaging to solve the sustainability challenges the sector is facing. Students aged 18-24 years might choose Michigan State University (School of Packaging), University of Reims’ Engineering Diploma in Packaging and Conditioning (ESEIC) or the NVC Chair Packaging Design and Management at Twente University. For business students the NVC Course Programme in Packaging has attracted 672 successful graduates throughout Europe of the EQF5 and EQF6 referenced Diploma since its conception in the 1980s.

Smartphone app allows robots to do the boring work and making robots more human
Teach a robot with your smartphone what to do and then let it do the boring work, leaving you with the more attractive jobs. That is the idea behind a prototype smartphone app developed by Purdue University researchers allowing a user to easily program any robot to perform a mundane activity, such as picking up parts from one area and delivering them to another. The work is outlined in a paper (6.47 MB) presented at DIS '19. A YouTube video is also available.
Free University of Brussels-VUB (in Dutch) researcher Ilias El Makrini has developed a software solution that facilitates better collaboration between man and cobot. He developed new software that allows robots to greet people, communicate with them and make eye contact. He also ensured that the robot had typical human characteristics such as eyes and a mouth. An experiment showed that these modifications made it easier to accept the robot as a 'colleague' and to work together.

CEOs focus on upskilling workforce to close the skills gap and more
According to PwC’s 22nd Annual Global CEO Survey (1.35 MB), four out of five CEOs bemoan their employees’ lack of essential skills and identify this factor as a threat to growth. CEOs in Japan and Central/Eastern Europe are most worried, with 95% and 89%, respectively, naming it as a concern, whereas those in Italy (55%) and Turkey (45%) are the least anxious about it.

NL government: attention to working with hazardous substances
The Dutch government has sent a letter (in Dutch) to the House of Representatives about the state of affairs regarding hazardous substances. The focus is on encouraging safe working practices by means of sound procedures and the provision of adequate information. A recent PREVENT study (in Dutch) compares the way the EU basic obligations under the European Working Conditions Framework Directive have been implemented in 10 member states.

Research into sustainable employability: structural approach is lacking
Employers are aware of the importance of vitality in the workplace, but there is often insufficient structural policy, according to research among HR professionals by Robidus and HR Praktijk (in Dutch). Nearly 45% of the participants indicate that their own organisation has not developed a policy with regard to sustainable employability and 32% characterise their employer's efforts as 'a collection of individual measures without interrelationship'. A link to the report will be sent to you after you have filled in your details (in Dutch).

NVC members receive this information with all the relevant links in the monthly NVC Members-only Update. If you have any questions, please contact us:, +31-(0)182-512411.