Members of the Made in Group recently attended their monthly best practice industry meeting in May. The event featured insightful talks and discussions centred around upskilling in the manufacturing sector. This article delves into the key points raised during the meeting, including the shift towards reskilling employees, concerns about an ageing workforce, and suggestions for addressing these challenges.
Upskilling as an Alternative to Hiring
During the meeting, Jason Pitt from the Made in Group chaired a discussion group focused on upskilling. Attendees highlighted the importance of reskilling existing employees instead of solely relying on new hires. Members shared success stories of how their businesses had successfully implemented reskilling programs, demonstrating that investing in current staff can yield positive results. This approach not only saves costs associated with recruitment but also fosters loyalty and motivation among employees.
Addressing the Aging Workforce Challenge
One major concern raised by attendees was the ageing workforce within the manufacturing industry. It was noted that several members reported having a significant number of employees past retirement age. To mitigate this challenge, members discussed various strategies, such as seconding staff to other businesses and forming stronger partnerships with local education institutions. An excellent example was provided by a member who hosted a school visit, which resulted in two students later securing employment with the company. Such initiatives help bridge the skills gap and attract younger talent to the industry.
Rethinking Apprenticeships and Promoting T Levels
Participants also called upon the government to reconsider the current state of the apprenticeship levy, with some arguing that the existing system is inadequate. Practical ideas were shared, including a focus on T levels, which are technical qualifications designed to provide a vocational alternative to A levels. Members encouraged each other to create dedicated webpages for T levels on their company websites, complete with application forms and job postings. This initiative aims to raise awareness among students about the opportunities available in the manufacturing sector and simplify the application process for interested candidates.
The Made in Group's best practice industry meeting in May shed light on the importance of upskilling, overcoming the challenges posed by an ageing workforce, and reevaluating apprenticeships. By focusing on reskilling, forming partnerships, and promoting T levels, manufacturers can adapt to changing demands, attract new talent, and create a sustainable future for the industry.
The Made in Group hosts monthly industry best practice events that showcase three speakers from the community. Each speaker has a five-minute slot to share their insightful best practice stories. These valuable talks are then uploaded to the Made-U pages of the Made dashboard, allowing members to access them on demand.
Take advantage of this opportunity by logging into your dashboard now to rewatch any of these enlightening talks. If you're interested in joining these events or have any inquiries, please contact us via our websites: www.madeinthemidlands.com or www.madeinyorkshire.com."