Brose UK, one of the fastest growing automotive suppliers in the West Midlands, is investing in the future of manufacturing talent by investing up to £3m in its new Training Academy between now and 2018.
The internationally operating mechatronics specialist is looking to address the skills shortage by providing existing and new workers with access to continuous development courses, technical training and support with soft skills.
This investment, which has been supported by a £1.49m grant from the Government’s new Skills Fund, has been channeled into developing flexible training to support the business, incorporating new E-learning stations, employing specialist trainers and creating modular training cells.
Staff can now gain the skills they are going to need to work on current and future platforms.
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The academy will also play a pivotal role in driving the firm’s approach to graduates, apprentices and interns, with 25 currently employed and a further 20 due to start in 2015 – the majority sourced from nearby schools, colleges and universities.
“We have more than doubled the size of our operations in Coventry over the last eighteen months, taking on another 200 people and opening two additional sites in the City,” explained Ruth Owen, HR Director at Brose UK.
“This growth comes with its own set of challenges and we are continually looking at new ways to develop existing members of staff and also ensure that the new people joining us fit seamlessly into the Brose culture of teamwork and world class manufacturing.”
The training academy will identify and develop specific training for each member of staff, whether that is leadership and management, technical upskilling or even learning best practice manufacturing techniques on the modular cells the company has set up.
Ruth continued: “The support we’ve received from Government has been crucial and certainly helped us to accelerate the introduction of this initiative by nearly a year. It also gives us the perfect platform to go after new car models and platforms knowing we’ve got the right infrastructure in place to train and develop our engineers.”
Brose’s ‘Apprentice of the Year’
Brose has always supported apprentices and the Academy will provide further structure to the programme, which includes the company’s Apprentice of the Year Award.
Electrical and Electronic Maintenance apprentice Sam Egginton is one of the company’s brightest manufacturing stars having just received this title.
“I’ve already completed my BTEC part of the course and am now progressing toward my Higher National Certificate, which will be completed next year. Working at Brose has given me a great platform to develop my skills in a real hands-on manner. I’ve learned a lot from shadowing more experienced members of our team,” explained Sam.
“Every day is different and I’m continually being given greater responsibility. For example, I’m now the first point of contact for the majority of building issues and recently played a major role in project managing the facilities layout of our third plant. You can’t buy that sort of experience.”