Lloyds Bank commits further £5m to address UK skills gap

Lloyds Bank has announced it is investing a further £5m to fund its sponsorship of its Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre, doubling its original commitment to £10m over 10 years.

UK Skills Gap - Lloyds Bank Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre - image courtesy of Lloyds BankThe extra funding will reportedly support around 3,500 manufacturing apprentices and engineers by 2024, equipping them with the right skills required to be at the forefront of manufacturing in the future.

Officially opened in 2015, the Lloyds Bank Advanced Manufacturing Training Centre (AMTC) in Coventry is a cutting-edge training centre, designed to redress the manufacturing high-level skills gaps, which have been identified as inhibiting the development of the high value manufacturing (HVM) sector.

The purpose-built facility provides apprentices with a range of training and experience of real-life projects in areas that underpin high value manufacturing, such as intelligent automation, additive manufacturing, robotics, CNC machining, metrology, joining/welding technologies, mechatronics, CAD and CAM.

For employers eager to grow their business and ensure they offer a competitive advantage, the Centre’s apprenticeship scheme provides business-ready technicians and engineers who have received specialist training with the skills to make an immediate difference in their organisation.

Constructed as part of a major expansion of the Manufacturing Technology Centre campus, the AMTC has already trained more than 350 apprentices and engineers, and opened its doors to its third cohort of apprentices in September.

Considering The Manufacturer’s emphasis towards addressing the UK’s women and diversity in manufacturing disparity, it’s good to that the number of female apprentices have grown from one in 2011 to 10 currently – equating to 19% of the total students at the AMTC, which vastly outperform the average in UK industry (4%).

Furthermore, there are currently 16 apprentices from a Black, Asian and minority ethnic background (BAME) – equating to 26% of the total apprentices at the AMTC, again outperforming the industry average (11% nationally).

Fixing manufacturing’s skills shortage

Manufacturers on the right side of history will be talking about increasing British industry’s share of the UK talent pool – by boosting participation from women and minority groups in the manufacturing workforce.

Whether UK manufacturing has a problem with women and diversity – or whether it’s the other way round – there is a problem that needs to be tackled if the country’s manufacturing renaissance is to be sustained to fix it.

This year, The Manufacturer launched the inaugural Women and Diversity in Manufacturing Summit – you can read the key takeaways below:

Women & Diversity in Manufacturing: Key ways to solve your talent challenge

Women and Diversity in Manufacturing Summit 2019 takes place on 7 March, 2019