Provider of wiring, interconnect and system solutions, Rockford Components, has won a new award recognising how its staff and management have worked together to grow the business.
The ‘Sharing in Growth Inspire trophy’ was handed over on Thursday, 28 September, in front of the plant’s 100-strong Worksop workforce who were praised for their skills and commitment by Bassetlaw MP John Mann and aerospace and defence industry experts.
A trophy and certificate were presented to Rockford managing director Peter Lion by Andy Page, CEO of Sharing in Growth, the intensive government-backed programme designed by industry to raise the competitiveness of the UK aerospace supply chain.
Rockford, which has plants in Worksop, Nottinghamshire, Rendlesham, Suffolk and Salisbury, Wiltshire, was selected for the Sharing in Growth transformation programme in 2014.
Since then, with the support of Sharing in Growth, Rockford has developed its business significantly, changed its culture, created a farsighted strategy and delivered operational performance in line with world-class practices.
As a result, it has secured £30m in contracts, created 100 new jobs and increased exports to more than 50% of production.
It is currently recruiting a range of roles to cope with its increased sales, including shop floor operatives, engineers and technicians and has just launched a new System Solutions Capability where Rockford is working with its suppliers to provide full systems rather than just cable assemblies or wire harnesses.
The company’s new business winning strategy also includes additional investment in a concept called Future Factory in its Worksop facility, which could help move annual sales up from £16m to £40m and could potentially lead to another 60 new jobs.
Presenting the award, Andy Page recognised Rockford staff for their dedication to continuous improvement. Page said: “As a country we have surprisingly low productivity compared with competitors in the USA, Germany and France.
“Sharing in Growth was created to help companies compete globally in high value manufacturing, making jobs more fulfilling, rewarding and secure. Ambitious companies deserve support so Sharing in Growth is proud to have played a part in Rockford’s fabulous success.”
Accepting the award, Rockford managing director Peter Lion said: “We have grown from being a small family firm in 1978 to becoming the UK’s largest independent provider of wiring, interconnect and system solutions for the defence, aerospace, marine and nuclear industries.
“The traditional UK family-run business can only go so far and we had started to hit the glass ceiling. We recognised that we needed to change and improve. Fortunately Sharing in Growth gave us the path to deliver and we now have the structure and capability to deliver and sustain growth.”
The SiG programme is endorsed by Airbus, BAE Systems, Boeing, Bombardier, GE, GKN, Leonardo, Lockheed Martin, MBDA, Rolls-Royce, Safran and Thales. It is supported by the Regional Growth Fund and more than £150m in private investment.
With SiG support, the first 43 companies on the programme have secured around £2bn in contracts to date – almost 20% of which is for direct export. Consequently, having secured more than 3,000 jobs, SiG is well on target to hit its ultimate objective of safeguarding 10,000 UK jobs by 2022.