Another leading Made in Group member has signed up to the Made Equal Employer Pledge, committing to adopt an inclusive approach to recruiting and retaining diverse talent as the scheme’s momentum continues to gather pace.
Doncaster-based manufacturing and engineering company, Agemaspark, has recently reinforced its commitment to promoting diversity and inclusivity within its workforce by signing up to Made in Yorkshire's inclusion pledge. Agemaspark aims to attract and retain diverse talent, fostering a more inclusive and innovative workplace.
Blazing an international trail by manufacturing faster and using less energy
Agemaspark, is a precision engineering specialist serving a wide range of sectors from oil and gas to power generation, to aerospace (civil/military and space), to construction and food. In 2020, mid-pandemic, a £500k investment in capacity to 3D print metal, which was commissioned in January 2021, helped Agemaspark not only to reduce manufacturing cycle times by at least 20%, but critically also to save huge amounts of energy. The company also carries out research and development for a key client in China, amongst others.
World-leading production capability, world-leading talent
It follows then that a world-leading production capability needs a world-leading talent attraction and retention strategy. Agemaspark's decision to sign up to Made in Group’s inclusion pledge reflects the company's commitment to fostering an inclusive workplace culture. Through this pledge, Agemaspark promises to actively promote diversity and inclusion, ensuring equal opportunities for all employees, regardless of their background, gender, ethnicity, or any other characteristic.
Paul Stockhill, Agemaspark’s managing director explains why he took the decision to sign up to the inclusion pledge: “When you work in manufacturing you need to diversify into many different sectors but you also need to diversify your workforce because there's a lack of experienced people out there. Of the 15 people we employ, 11 of those have come to us from the age of 16, 17 or 18 years of age and they’ve been fully apprenticed-trained, but the industry's evolved in such a way that the skills needed to 3D print metal or handle digital components demand a highly specialised skillset.”
Research has consistently shown that diverse teams benefit from increased innovation, creativity, and problem-solving abilities. By embracing diversity, Agemaspark aims to tap into a wider range of perspectives and experiences, enhancing its ability to meet the evolving needs of its customers and stay at the forefront of manufacturing.
Agemaspark recognises the importance of engaging with local communities to build a diverse talent pipeline. By actively participating in outreach programmes, job fairs, and career events, the company aims to connect with individuals from diverse backgrounds who may not have previously considered a career in manufacturing and engineering.
Paul is an active champion for local education providers, working with Doncaster UTC [University Technical College] to mentor female, as well as male, students. He also supports international students. He reminds us: “There's definitely an excellent career path for everyone in this industry, regardless of gender or ethnicity. It's all about design and innovation, which need everyone’s input to generate the best ideas.”
Lights, camera, action...!
Agemaspark is so well-respected nationally for its work in the education sector that its team was asked by the Department for Education to take part in a new film made by Saatchi and Saatchi to raise awareness about the opportunities opened up by apprenticeships in the STEM space.
We are family
Paul talks about his team with great affection, likening them to his second family. Supporting employees to meet their childcare commitments isn’t just about flexibility for working mothers, but working fathers too. Paul also supports neurodiverse team members in realising their full potential in the workforce.
By taking a proactive stance, the company hopes to inspire others to follow suit, ultimately leading to a more diverse and inclusive industry as a whole, and the Made in Group inclusion pledge has been at the heart of this decision. Agemaspark understands that attracting and retaining diverse talent requires more than just a commitment on paper. The company is dedicated to creating a welcoming environment where employees feel valued, respected, and supported throughout their career progression.
Agemaspark's commitment to diversity and inclusion sets an example for other manufacturing and engineering companies in the region. By taking a proactive stance, the company hopes to inspire others to follow suit, ultimately leading to a more diverse and inclusive industry as a whole.
Vibrant and full of promise
Looking to the future, Paul is taking a characteristically forward-looking and proactive approach in exploring making the transition to an employer ownership trust model, known as an EOT, in the medium term. “The business is so vibrant and full of promise that I want to ensure it will belong to the people who work for me now and the future talent that will come in. That’s our goal.” So, what better commitment to inclusion could there be than by championing opportunities for diverse employees to have a meaningful stake in the company’s future success and, ultimately, to become its future leaders? The future looks bright for Agemaspark.
Our employer toolkit includes a range of high-quality 'Made' employer branding logos and assets. In addition, members gain access to valuable resources through the Made Platform, enabling them to post job vacancies on the Made Futures job board. The platform also offers a job vacancy template for creating customised social ads. By utilising these tools, you can effectively communicate your organisation's dedication to diversity and inclusion, both internally and externally.