Martin Doyle, Group Managing Director of the Engineering Technology Group (ETG)
ETG is recognised as the UK’s leading independent supplier of high technology machine tools with a turnover of £35M.
Initiatives in major manufacturing conurbations, such as that proposed for the Sunderland area and other local enterprise partnerships, are always welcome to give a boost to the engineering and manufacturing sector.
However, it is important that the job creation opportunities are for genuine ‘new jobs’. There is a yawning skills gap in this country and those looking to get careers in engineering need to be encouraged from the early apprenticeship days, as well as those looking for skills improvement.
Our business thrives on advanced technology machine tools, but operators with the necessary skills to maximise the technical prowess of these machines are just as important as the machines themselves.
We propose to invest heavily in the training infrastructure available to young people who are the engineers of the future. To this aim, we are helping equip (at our own cost) two major training centres in the Midlands and plan to be working with others around the UK by the year end.
This is us thinking outside the box in effect. Yes, we supply the machines, but we also feel an obligation to those who will be operating them and the need to contribute to greater productivity.
The Government says it is boosting STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) skills, digital skills and numeracy, including extending specialist maths schools, while £170m will be invested in creating new institutes of technology.
Again all very welcome because young people are aware that there are only so many IT or media jobs these days. They realise that manufacturing represents a rewarding and long term future and governmental initiatives - supported by those in the industry - are the way forward.”
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