With welding and fabrication requirements varying across OSHA, customer, job site, state/city, and industry, before we even talk about welding processes, methods, and regulatory bodies, each fabrication begins with the challenging work of keeping your craftworkers properly documented for each coded welding job.
And, while a Craftworker’s AWS welding certification may say one thing about their competencies, sometimes their actual work performance shows that they have a higher grind-out rate or create more than their share of defects that will trigger extra NDT, costing you time and money.
These competing requirements only compound the difficulty of logging welds completed against job/customer-validated welding procedures via welders with fully certified welder’s performance qualifications (WPQs). Without the right welder & document management systems in place, your welding supervisors, foremen, and fabrication managers risk having non-qualified, improperly cross-qualified, or over-qualified welders performing welds, not only potentially leading to merely an inefficient allocation of staff, but perhaps worse, resulting in fines and unnecessary rework with rejected turnover packages and a dismayed customer.
That’s something no welding fabricator, custom welder, or metal fabrication facility can afford and it’s tough to avoid this without a quality welder management system in place, backing you up. No matter how many of your foremen and managers have CWI certification or how many of your welders have AWS welding certification and a golden arm, you want the right alignment of the right craftworkers with the approved welding procedure at the right time burning rod. Not “shoulder to the holder” novice welders on tough root passes with loose WPSs throwing bird poop by making substandard welds in cramped quarters while a senior meat hand who is a highly qualified underwater welder – both highly rated and highly paid – is running a 2G MiG fill 10 feet away neck down nearby.
Welding Fabrication and Tracking AWS Certifications
The best way of handling welder certifications, be it AWS welding certifications, ASME welding certifications, or any welder certifications, is through a comprehensive software solution for use throughout your shop & field teams from your certified welding inspectors thru to your foreman, chargehands, and other shop/field supervisors down to each welder, pipefitter, welder helper, and NDE tech.
These craftworker management capabilities should be paired with robust welding procedure software and this welding solution needs to offer both creation and assignment options for staff and welding procedures. By providing code and artificial intelligence qualified welder assignment support and easy multi-level craftworker status modification as well as native cross analysis comparing assigned welding procedures and other craftworker guidance documentation against worker capabilities at every stage of the work chain, you maximize your bottom line and avoid regulatory or customer requirement non-compliance.
Many welding and fabrication shops may already be using spreadsheets, basic software, or “off label” ERP products like SAP alone with some customizations to manage their welder certifications, competencies, and prolongation/continuity.
But what happens when the regulatory codes are updated or a welder is technically certified, but your fabrication managers tell you that those certifications were signed off by a previous employee and are somewhat suspect, or that, while fully certified, a given welder just isn’t up to snuff for a given weld or welding procedure? Is your spreadsheet or ERP customization maintained and updated automatically by code committee members? Can your welding procedure software or welder management software handle such ambiguities quickly and easily?
Keeping information consistent across all levels of a project is paramount to job site success. What a foreman tells the fabrication manager and what they see in project management software must be consistent. When welder competencies change (whether formally or informally), certifications expire, or new welders get involved, your documentation, fabrication and welder management software needs to stay on top of all these variables.
Whatever project management tool you use – whether welding-specific or not – updating AWS, ASME, and others certifications for your craftworkers, be they welders, brazers, solderers, or other, can be a timely and manual process if there isn’t a welding fabrication shop feedback loop from the floor and field to the solution. This is especially the case when you need to pull some certifications, leave others in place, and reinstate others as the situation changes.
How to Pull AWS Certifications in ProWrite
AT CEI, we have listened to industry feedback and have added a new feature for pulling or reinstating certifications with ease within our ProWrite weld procedure software.
Here’s how you do this in ProWrite:
- Under the Welders tab, select Open, and then Welder.
- Select the Welder you would like to modify records for.
- Select the Qualification tab. Here you will see a list of all the processes this welder has qualifications for and if they have history with those welds or not. You now have the option to select Pull Cert to remove a given qualification from their record. Once completed, click Save/Close. Your Welder reports will now no longer show the welder has qualifications for those certifications you pulled. This will then automatically be reflected across all integrated software you have with ProWrite.
Now, your welding procedure software and craftworker software can reflect what your fabrication team is actually experiencing when working with your welders and other craftworkers, rather than having to keep in mind which welders are qualified to which joints and procedures and which aren’t and how that situation may have changed in the last month, week, day or hour.
On top of that, CEI’s APIs enable data transfer to ERP, HRIS, and personnel tracking systems so your welding qualifications and welder scheduling can always be planned and tracked accurately per regulatory codes, internal company QA/QC policies, and customer requirements.
Get Started Tracking AWS, ASME, and other Certifications Through Welding Procedure Software with fully integrated CraftWorker Management Software capabilities
Ready to start using this new feature? If you’re already a ProWrite customer, you simply need to update your software to the latest version to enjoy this added benefit. Using ProWrite Cloud hosted? This capability is already available with no installation needed. Additionally, if you have deployed the integrated APIs through Fabrication Manager this capability provides a new API call. This allows the passing of certification status on a per process level just as the previous API supported per craftworker status functions. Together these provide unprecedented access to shop foreman and field supervisors to pull certifications from their mobile device and sync status in real time across your entire welding software suite used by your enterprise.
If you’re new to ProWrite or Fabrication Manager and would like to learn more about the Pull Certs feature as well as more about the software as a whole, schedule a demo with us, and we’ll walk you through all the time-saving benefits ProWrite integrated with Fabrication Manager can offer your welding procedure management process.