Made Here Now has announced a series of new initiatives designed to support the recruitment efforts of small and medium-sized manufacturers. High Value Manufacturing Catapult, alongside 15 other organisations, have sponsored their current phase of development, allowing this important expansion.

Pictured: young manufacturer at work

Aimed at encouraging young people to consider a future in UK manufacturing, these new initiatives are based around highlighting positive developments in the sector whilst illustrating a connection to education and jobs.

Topping the list of initiatives is the production of materials designed to attract talent into the sector. They will help to provide an exciting picture of what a career in manufacturing could look like to a young person. And this is vital; seeing yourself in the workplace is the first step in developing an interest in our collective work.

These resources will help SME manufacturers build on their current strategies and aid long-term recruitment efforts. Some have already started outreach projects where it may immediately help. For example, the Sheffield headquartered steel casting specialist, William Cook, has local education links. Managing director Chris Seymour says:

“I have a link with a specific local school where we are funding their purchase of a desktop 3D printer for their pupils to try out. Some of those pupils will then visit our factory to see what we are doing with a sophisticated industrial 3D printer so they learn what the technology is capable of.

I’d find highly useful well thought-out material I could give to groups such as this, or online resources I could point them to, as this would supplement what they see at our plant and perhaps boost their enthusiasm for a manufacturing career. “

Another manufacturer that has invested in links with local schools is JJ Churchill, a Leicestershire-based maker of turbine blades. Andrew Churchill, executive chairman, says of Made Here Now:

“I like the overall approach, I find it fresh and appealing. I’d applaud anything it can do to assist the efforts of Britain’s manufacturers to get closer to schools in their area and increase the attractiveness of the sector as a place for young people to come and work.”

The project doesn’t aim to replicate the work that many other groups have produced to promote engineering and manufacturing. Instead, it looks to provide a useful way to link with the best of these resources, alongside producing new material to support recruitment efforts. To ensure a joined-up approach, Made Here Now are also planning collaborative ventures with trade associations in this work.

In this spirit, not all of the material being produced is planned for manufacturers to use themselves. Some of the material will be aimed at the specific training and education needs of organisations which have manufacturers as customers. Supporting organisations like those in financial services will be key in the planned development.

Since its launch in 2014, Made Here Now has received backing from over 70 sponsors, including high-profile manufacturers, charities, consultancies. universities and the High Value Manufacturing Catapult. And they already provide a wealth of resources for manufacturers. Peter Marsh, founder of Made Here Now, said:

“We have developed a website and support materials that are already having a positive impact. Thanks to the support of these latest sponsors we are now able to take the influence of Made Here Now to the next level. We want more people to take a look at the website, share it with their contacts and let us know what you think of it.”

Find out more about how to get involved in this initiative and others on the Made Here Now website:  www.madeherenow.com/get-involved/