Tuesday, June 9, 2020

News: AMRC has best apprentice achievement rates in the region


The latest official figures released by the Education and Skills Funding Agency, show the University of Sheffield AMRC Training Centre is top of the regional league table for engineering apprentice achievement.

The AMRC Training Centre is a £20.5m centre on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham where the focus is on students aged from 16 upwards, taken on paid apprenticeships.

Anne Griggs, head of business development at the AMRC Training Centre, said that the latest figures are testimony to the continuous improvement culture at the centre and the pivotal role its industry board plays in shaping a fit-for-purpose curriculum.

"Engineering and manufacturing skills are vital to the success of the Sheffield City Region economy and these figures show that the AMRC Training Centre is top of the league when it comes to delivering these skills," said Anne.

The training centre opened its doors just six years ago and has been instrumental in attracting global brands such as McLaren, Rolls-Royce and Boeing to establish production facilities in the region. The centre was judged as "good" in all areas by Ofsted following a full inspection last year.

Anne added: "These are difficult and confusing times for industry, with employers rightly thinking hard about whether and where to invest in their talent pipeline. The success figures show that an apprenticeship with the AMRC Training Centre is a safe investment in the region for strengthening the skills and talent base of their business with tangible benefits to the bottom line.

"We are delighted with these figures and the recent award of the Ofsted Good ranking, which are great achievements for such a young organisation,” said Anne. “But we are not complacent. We have rapidly switched to online recruitment methods to make it easier for employers and apprentices to access our wide range of courses.

"Although we had record numbers of employers wanting to sign up in March, the pandemic has led many to put things on hold. Nevertheless, many engineering and manufacturing firms in our region are still working and we have switched to virtual and online learning to support the growth and development of their apprentices. Like them, the AMRC Training Centre is open for business, providing the region’s manufacturers with access to world-leading facilities and the best apprentice achievement rates in the region."


The figures were released as evidence grows of manufacturers in the region continuing to invest in quality apprenticeships, despite the impact of the global pandemic on business confidence.

Phil Longden, operations director at NE Components in Hope Valley, who took on an apprentice during the coronavirus outbreak, said: "Things may be uncertain but we do need to maintain skill levels now and looking to the future, so continuing with an apprentice programme is incredibly important."

His sentiments were shared by Managing Director of Sheffield-based Atlantic Pumps, Andy Smith, who said: "Business is down but there is still a huge amount to do, supporting our clients in protecting their assets and helping them to fulfil obligations. We wanted to take on a new apprentice now because, ultimately, we believe in both our future and the future of apprentices.

"Our business relies on having quality engineers with a great attitude for customer care. These are in short supply and we've found the best way to get them is to invest in creating them ourselves, in partnership with the AMRC Training Centre.

"It isn't a quick fix though, so we have gone ahead, knowing that if we want this resource for 2021 and beyond we have to invest now.

"With the AMRC Training Centre, we can recruit the right attitude and rely on the training centre teaching the skills to create a powerful mix and provide exactly what our customers need."

AMRC Training Centre website

Images: AMRC Training Centre


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