The latest Manufacturing Advisory Service Barometer revealed that 43% of companies questioned have seen an increase in their order books over the past six months, with a massive 62% expecting sales turnover to grow between now and June 2013.
45% of manufacturers cited the availability of specific skills as a barrier to growth. At Amdale we are keen promoters of the apprenticeship as we have had several success stories over the years and continue to recruit apprentices as a way of safe guarding the future skills available to the business.
Our highly skilled employees provide us with enviable expertise which our customers rely upon. Which is why personal development continues once an apprentice becomes a full member of staff, as regular off-site training in management and other skills is provided. The policy avoids the problem many firms in the area have of recruiting and retaining skilled programmers, machinists and quality control staff.
Lorraine Holmes, Area Director for MAS explained “The overwhelming feeling is one of positivity, with order books, sales expectations, future investment in premises/machinery and the desire to create employment all up on the previous report.” She continued: “Our companies are sending out a powerful message and highlighting their determination to explore new opportunities in 2013 following a year of global consolidation in 2012.”
Lorraine continued: “SEMTA has done a fantastic job of helping companies develop the future pipeline of talent, with a recent report highlighting a 142% increase in the number of apprentice starts since 2009-10.What our findings show is that there is still work to do and we need to ensure that the recent progress is just the start and we continue to develop apprentices and graduates that have the right level and types of skills required by manufacturers.”
The Barometer indicates a potential for recovery, SME manufacturers are hoping to increase turnover, staff numbers and investment in the first half of 2013 and hope these aims will be supported by the banks, the government and other agencies.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Manufacturing is a key driver in our economy, which is why it takes centre stage in the Industrial Strategy for growth. As clearly demonstrated in the latest MAS Barometer findings, skills provision remains a concern for many manufacturing SMEs. It’s vital, therefore, that Government and industry continue to work together to address it, and other growth priority issues like access to finance and attracting young people into manufacturing.”
At Amdale, our two new 5 Axis machining centres have bedded in well and are now in full use. We continue our commitment to investing in new technology and exceeding our customer’s expectations.