Hello from Edmonton Dr. Abell! And hello from a currently enrolled Athabasca University student as well!
My company is a small one. We have 12 people, only seven of whom are the assemblers and testers. We manufacture our own products and have our own wave solder and pick and place machines.
The problem I face is that most of the training materials are vastly too expensive for a small company like mine. Their is excellent quality in the material from your company and from other places like IPC but I just can't justfy the amount for so few emplyees. I'm really over the barrel as I want to be able to make sure my employees skills are current and also to be able to train employees who have no post secondary training butI just can't afford it. I really think that their are lots of companies just like mine who would purchase material if it was better priced.
I guess I don't have a question but would appreciate your opinion.
Garth, the short term solution to your problem from our perspective is to rent the suite, train your people, and send it back. This can fit anyone's budget. We try not to have price stand in the way when the training is required.
The only danger you face there is if your employees rebel when it it time to return it. (We actually had that happen with a small company in the midwest U.S.A. with seven employees - the company decided to buy to keep them happy!)
In the longer term, we are looking at what we think will be a better alternative for this type of problem. Dropping the price to try to hit an affordability target doesn't work. Building this material to the standard we insist on is massively expensive, and payback is off in the future. But we are aware of the issues, and will have a solution in the next few months. Meanwhile, check out the rental option. I think it would work for you.