Advanced Manufacturing Top of the Skills Agenda
Wed, 18 July 2012
Advanced Manufacturing was top of the agenda at Semta’s forums designed to update training providers and colleges on the latest skills development and business opportunities.
At events in Bristol, Yorkshire and Leicestershire, experts from sector skills council Semta explained the benefits of a new Higher Apprenticeship in advanced manufacturing which will develop the technical skills crucial to job creation and growth – and offer a work-based alternative to university.
Said Semta Networks Manager Bill Sutton:” The new Higher Apprenticeship not only offers the opportunity to upskill the existing workforce, it will also develop new recruits needed to replace skills lost through retirements among an aging workforce.
“Semta research indicates that industry needs to recruit and train 82,000 engineers, scientists and technicians across the UK by 2016, and 363,000 of the current technical workforce is qualified below word class standards and needs to be skilled up. So Semta is working with employers to provide training providers with the frameworks and qualification they need to best serve the industry.
“The demand for higher level skills is increasing as the UK competes in high value markets such as advanced manufacturing, bio technology and emerging and green technologies. And as traditional industries become leaner, many jobs require multi-skilled technicians or demand very specific skills sets. “
Forum attendees included members of the Semta Recognised Training Provider network as well as other providers keen to participate in network initiatives such as a review of National Occupational Standards which shape qualifications and sharing best practice on functional skills, a key component of apprenticeships.
Brunel and Gordano Training (BGT), part of City of Bristol College, hosted the first event at their brand new state of the art South Bristol Skills Academy and were presented with a plaque recognising their Semta provider quality status by Bill Sutton. Rich Walker BGT business development manager said: “ BGT is dedicated to the promotion and development of engineering skills and engineering apprenticeships at levels 2, 3 and also higher apprenticeships in the South West region. The event was an excellent forum to showcase our delivery models, share good practice, and show other colleges and providers our facilities including our new Composites Workshop. ”
Valerie Richards, chief executive of Derwent Training Association who hosted the Yorkshire forum at their Malton head quarters said: “As a small training provider, we believe in giving a good quality and personal service to our customers and taking care to give employers what they need to support their businesses now and in the future. Working with an established and professional business such as Semta is important to our reputation and the opportunity to network with other providers as part of the Semta network is something we believe is a worthwhile investment.”
Semta is one of the largest sector skills councils, supporting 130,000 companies across the UK and its Recognised Training Provider Network benefits from access to Semta sector expert support as well as the latest updates on funding, policy, national occupational standards, frameworks, qualifications and other cutting-edge developments.