British industry still suffers from a lack of engineers. Such is the concern that business secretary Vince Cable believes the shortage provides a serious threat to recovery. In particular, Cable highlighted the lack of women currently working or actively seeking employment in the British engineering industry.
Only 8% of British engineers are women, which is the lowest proportion in Europe. Compare that with Germany (15%), Sweden (25%) and top-performing Latvia (30%) and it’s easy to see why there is such deep-seated concern.
Research suggests the problem starts long before young people choose a career with many youngsters ditching maths and science as soon as they can. It’s a trend especially marked for girls.
A recent article in the Sheffield Star highlighted the concern. The newspaper reported that only 14 per cent of students at the new University Technical College, are girls. At the newly opened training centre at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, just four of the 160 engineering apprentices are female. Continue reading
The continuing heavy rain, high winds, storms and subsequent tidal patterns that caused the collapse of the railway line connecting Devon and Cornwall is likely to cost the South West economy millions of pounds a day, business leaders have claimed. It is a similar story around the country with bridges, power lines and roads damaged, in some cases, for the second or third time in the space of 12 months.
‘Six weeks to repair’ claimed Network Rail this week as work got underway in Dawlish. A total cost of £14million is the figure that has been put on the work in that small area of Devon. Tough times for rail passengers and a real focus on the manufacturing industry charged with providing the necessary help to assist in the repair of the line as soon as possible.
Who would have thought the announcement by Sir James Dyson of a planned £250million expansion of his company headquarters in Wiltshire would be met with a degree of consternation? After all, what could be better than the creation of 3,000 engineering jobs?
Unfortunately, according to recent statistics, finding 3,000 new engineers is far from the straightforward task many would believe it to be. Even in these troubled times when many professions can pick and choose from a vast array of candidates, there are serious concerns surrounding the lack of qualified engineers moving into the industry.
The company has been working on plans for the new site for the past two years and is close to securing planning permission. “If that goes ahead, we hope to build it by 2015,” said Sir James Dyson in a recent article published in the Telegraph.
When it comes to the economy, there have been tales of woe for six or seven years. A double dip recession, unemployment issues and precious little sign of recovery. Thankfully, there are better times ahead for the UK;s manufacturing industry with the IMF having upgraded its UK growth forecast from 1.9% to 2.4% for this year.
Recent predictions suggest the new forecast puts Britain well ahead of Germany, which the IMF expects to grow by 1.6%, and France, which is forecast to grow by 0.9%.
Good news indeed. The facts make for positive reading. And here are those facts. New manufacturing orders grew at the strongest rate in almost three years in the three months to January, with the CBI revealing that 34% of manufacturers reported an increase in new orders over the period.
PRV Engineering’s significant investment in a new plating facility in 2013 has led to a firmer control over prices and lead times.
One of the fastest growing high precision engineering machining specialists in Europe, PRV have been trading for over 27 years. Managing director Simon Jones believes the company’s new plating facility will have a vital part to play in the future of its Busbar business.
He said; ”Our order book continues to grow and the stabilisation of our Busbar business, via the investment in our new plating facility, helps to convince our loyal clients that we are here for the long term.
“Because we are in the high voltage power industry and a lot of our products are Busbars, they either require tin-plating or silver plating for added conductivity. In the industry we find it increasingly difficult to get the service done in an adequate time and at an adequate price.