Wednesday, July 11, 2018

News: Financial support for SMEs who want to recruit next generation of engineers


Close Brothers Group plc, the leading merchant banking group, is continuing with a programme to help SMEs recruit and train a new generation of advanced engineering workers with the support of the AMRC Training Centre in Rotherham and the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA).

Employers will be given financial help as part of the company's long established commitment to supporting small and medium sized enterprises who might otherwise not be able to afford to take on an apprentice.

Based on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham, The AMRC Training Centre forms part of the University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) group and provides training in the practical and academic skills that manufacturing companies need to compete globally, from apprenticeship through to doctorate and MBA level.

In what is a banking first, the programme is in its fourth year and Close Brothers is supporting a further 20 apprentices in the Sheffield city region (SCR).

Nikki Jones, director of the AMRC Training Centre, said: "The support Close Brothers has given has transformed the lives of many apprentices already and its continued support is invaluable to young people and small businesses in the region.

"The scheme is designed in such a way so as to support those individuals and companies who need it most but also contribute towards the training centre's ongoing commitment to encourage more females into the industry and boost higher level skills development through degree apprenticeships.

"All of this is underpinned by the support needed for our smaller businesses in the region which are the lifeblood of our economy. The recruitment of ambitious and fully-trained apprentices that can hit the ground running is definitely the right way to go - not only to address the glaring skills shortage threatening the UK engineering and manufacturing industries but to create a diverse and dynamic workforce brimming with fresh talent and new ideas."

Adrian Sainsbury, managing director of Close Brothers banking division, added: "For the last three years we have supported SMEs around the country to invest in apprentices and we are delighted to be able to continue our work with AMRC to sponsor a further 20 apprentices this year.

"We know from experience that SMEs often need assistance to take on apprentices, so we designed our programme to help with the specific issues they face. We believe the scheme has made a real difference to the business results of participating SMEs and we look forward to continuing this important initiative in partnership with the AMRC."


The scheme has already resulted in some fantastic apprentice success stories. At Foxwood Diesel, the heavy duty engine builder, Leigh Worsdale, was the first female Apprentice of the Year at the AMRC Training Centre's awards in 2017.

James Selka, CEO of the Manufacturing Technologies Association, said: "The AMRC Training Centre provides world-class education and Close Brothers have helped alleviate the financial constraints associated with training - particularly for the SME community. It is excellent news that the apprenticeship programme will be able to impact on even more young people’s lives, changing perceptions of the industry and closing the skills gap in the process."

AMRC Training Centre website

Images: AMRC


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