Training is great.

But if it doesn’t ultimately produce results for the customer, it isn’t so great.

"[World Class Manufacturing] is not a 'flavor of the month.' It's the only way we do business."

Chrysler Group Senior Vice President of Manufacturing and WCM Scott Garberding spoke those words during our official dedication of the World Class Manufacturing Academy Tuesday.

And, if you haven’t noticed, Chrysler’s business has been picking up the past year, with WCM playing an important role in that pick up. It’s a role that impacts customers and employees alike.

For customers, WCM and the company's renewed commitment to quality has been proven through the various quality awards for our 2011 and 2012 models.

For employees, VP of the UAW-Chrysler Department General Holiefield said WCM is vital to job security, as well as having other benefits.

WCM, Holiefield said Tuesday, "broadens the thinking and ability" of employees. He added that the goal of WCM is to "transform our members, Chrysler's employees, into the best quality manufacturing employees that the dollar can buy.

"We recognize that we cannot negotiate job security. They're going to have to earn it and, one way they're going to have to earn it is through WCM."

Since the WCM Academy started late last year in a pilot phase, more than 320 students have attended more than 30 sessions. Each session is 2-3 days long, with an additional session at each employees' home plant for follow up. The WCMA staff consists of four full-time, WCM-certified instructors plus 12 other associate trainers who have specialties in the various WCM areas and are called in as needed to teach.

Every WCM Academy instructor and trainer previously worked in Chrysler manufacturing operations. In addition to the WCM Academy staff, the curriculum also has roots in practical Chrysler manufacturing. It was created internally with input from our plant personnel to address company-specific needs and processes.

About 1,200 plant managers, team leaders and other plant employees will go through the WCMA every year. The 25,000-sq.-ft WCMA is housed within the UAW-Chrysler Technology Training Center, Warren, Mich.

Students at Chrysler Group’s WCM Academy don 3D goggles to become fully immersed in a plant setting full of unsafe acts and conditions. The 3D technology is the same as what the U.S. Department of Defense uses to train soldiers deployed to Afghanistan.

See our World Class Manufacturing Academy Flickr set for more images and information.

If you're more into video, visit the PentastarVideo YouTube channel to see a 2+ minute feature on the WCM Academy and more of the Garberding and Holiefield WCM Academy ceremony comments.