The training center, in Monheim am Rhein, Germany, has separate areas for the businesses – Food and Beverage, Food Retail Services, Healthcare, Institutional, Nalco Water, Pest Elimination, Quick Service Restaurants and Textile Care.
It has the capacity to train up to 3,000 associates and customers every year.
The firm would not comment on the investment size.
Work at the center and in the field
Wiebke Rumpf, director, Technical Service and Training, Europe said the facility has capacity to train its own territory managers and customers.
“We believe the site will meet our near-future training needs. As our company continues to expand and our field team continues to grow, there may be a need to expand the facility or open additional locations, but we will make these assessments as the need arises,” she told FoodQualityNews.
“We’ve always trained our associates through a combination of deskside training, e-learning, webinars, assessments and hands-on experience with a fellow territory manager at customer sites.
“We provide our sales-and-service associates with extensive training when they join the company, and additional training annually. This will continue even with the opening of the training center.”
Trainers for each business are employed at the center site and work in the field.
A typical training session will cover fundamentals of the business, equipment installation and trouble-shooting and product application and cleaning procedures.
Territory managers in F&B will train on the processes encountered within a customer site and common operational challenges.
“The center is equipped to train associates in every aspect of the work they will perform, across multiple industries. We can train associates in warewashing in our Institutional business, to food safety procedures in a food retail setting, to dosing in a commercial laundry,” said Rumpf.
“We will run week-long trainings for our technicians who are new to Ecolab and we will also hold refresher training. And we will plan customized trainings for our customers specific to the industry in which they work.”
Attract and retain workforce
Halit Kayatürk, SVP and market head of Market Central for Ecolab, said it aims to provide the highest level of training as well as retaining and attracting the industry’s most talented workforce.
“The center enables us to train them under real-life conditions on our technical services and equipment. By doing so, we are helping to ensure that we continue to provide our customers with the best on-site service and to effectively solve any operational challenges they may face.”
Ecolab has 15 training centers across North America, China and Mexico.
The EU site is also home to the European Innovation Center (EIC), one of eleven research and development centers.
It has a team of more than 100 scientists focused on helping combat the operational and sustainability challenges customers face.
Rumpf said automation is an ‘exciting area of innovation’ in the food and beverage industry.
“Ecolab is a pioneer in utilizing remote monitoring, diagnostics and controls to help our customers operate more efficiently – we already have thousands of connected controllers,” she said.
“This connectivity supports our business model by empowering Ecolab associates with insights, enabling proactive service and enhancing the value of personally delivered service.
“We believe that technology can bring personalized service to a whole new level, where technology “does the work” and where our people provide essential expertise.”