The Manufacturer is pleased to announce that Capgemini will be sponsoring and judging the category of Young Manufacturer of the Year at TMMX Awards 2022, which will be held as part of Digital Manufacturing Week in Liverpool from 14-18 November.
The current ageing workforce, and lack of young people entering the sector, has been well documented and is a key concern for most manufacturers. With the advance towards digitalisation, there is a whole raft of burgeoning skills that manufacturers will need in abundance over the coming decades – and those will need to come from a talent pool that simply is not there at present.
Commenting on this issue, Julian Relph, Vice President, Head of Manufacturing, Automotive and Life Sciences Market Units, at Capgemini, said: “A lack of skilled workers who have the required digital skills to leverage new technologies is a key concern. Experienced workers are retiring faster than the entry of new workers in the industry, and the divide between individuals who embrace new technology and those who treat advances in technology with a suspicion, are just some of the reasons as to why it’s a struggle to find the right talent.
“If the current skills shortage continues, manufacturers may see their productivity decline due to slower production, increased costs and performance issues affecting a business’s ability to remain competitive.”
However, to help address this skills imbalance TMMX award for Young Manufacturer of the Year serves to highlight the benefits of a career in manufacturing while at the same time quashing the perception of the sector held by some young people.
2021 award winner Catriona Booth, Jaguar Land Rover, commented: “Receiving this award recognises not only my contribution but, by extension, recognises the development of young female leaders in manufacturing which is really something to celebrate.”
The award, available to manufacturers aged 19-30, shines a spotlight on an individual who has demonstrated a strong understanding of their manufacturing environment and processes; a hands-on passion for their work; a record of commitment to training and professional development; and an ambition to excel in the industry.
Relph explained that to ensure a stronger and more sustainable future for manufacturing in such a fast-changing and complex world, it has never been so important to fill the gap with people that have the relevant expertise, specialist knowledge and most importantly, digital skills to proactively deal with today’s environment.
Manufacturing provides excellent job opportunities for continued personal development but may not be top of the list for many young people. “We have an obligation to highlight the opportunities so that young people are aware of what’s on offer,” he added.
“Bringing more young people into the sector will help to spread the word and encourage others. This is why Capgemini heavily invests in young people through many programmes such as the Digital and Social Inclusion programme which uses our skills to help society address the impact of the digital revolution and harness the opportunity it brings.
“It is vital we help young people to understand the opportunities available to them and provide opportunities to talk to our people, and experience time in the workplace – building pathways into employment through our digital academies, provide training and support for those who might otherwise not get the opportunity, and working with partners across the sector to provide employment opportunities for young talent. This is why Capgemini is working with both central and devolved governments and local education to provide an entry point to the industry and enable young people to get the future they want.
“Our acquisition of Altran has added over 50,000 manufacturing and engineering specialists to the group and has enabled us to take the lead in what we call ‘Intelligent Industry’ – the digital transformation of industrial and tech companies with a focus on enabling digital manufacturing. With both companies built on engineering talent and traditions, Capgemini and Altran will continue to invest massively in its talents, opening up a host of opportunities for the employees of both entities.”
Commenting on TMMX Awards, Relph added: “The Young Manufacturer Awards category closely aligns with Capgemini’s core values and purpose. At Capgemini we recognise the value of role models in inspiring the next generation to consider opportunities in this sector.
“We are committed to building UK talent by bringing together diverse teams to promote creativity and innovation, with a focus on junior talent across the country. We have 50+ years of heritage with a sizeable presence in cities such as Birmingham that have a strong manufacturing ethos and we’re also a large employer in Telford where the heart of the UK’s industrial revolution began. A third of our new workforce is sourced through our long-running graduate and apprentice programmes that span across digital and technology solutions, project management, cyber security and much more.
“Recent events have proved that digital talent is more critical than ever before. Building an inclusive and sustainable future for all, enabled by technology, and drawing on the energy of our talent is at the heart of Capgemini’s purpose. We are convinced that true diversity of thought and approach that young talent brings is fundamental to creating successful innovative solutions.”