Automated Technology Group (ATG) Ltd – the UK’s largest independent automation control company, with a turnover of around £30m – has launched its own apprenticeship scheme to meet its burgeoning need for qualified employees.
The Autotech Academy will provide skilled and qualified engineers for ATG – comprising Autotech Controls Ltd, Igranic Control Systems Ltd and PSJ Fabrications Ltd – in order to meet demand for the group’s expertise from blue-chip clients in the automotive, logistics, airports, food & beverage, metals, utilities, oil & gas, mining & aggregates and power generation industries.
Explained Andy Robinson, CEO of ATG, "With the current manufacturing boom in the UK, we simply cannot recruit sufficient staff of the right calibre through the traditional channels, so we have expanded our previous informal training programmes into a structured academy in order to fast-track both school leavers and graduates. We’re aiming to take on some 20 apprentices before the end of this year. We will gain engineers to allow our business to continue its expansion and future success," he continued, "and the young people will gain nationally recognised qualifications and transferable skills, while earning a proper salary. It’s a win-win solution."
The Advanced Apprenticeships, Higher Apprenticeships and Graduate Programme offered by the Autotech Academy are being delivered in association with Semta, the government-licensed Sector Skills Council for Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies. Through a combination of on-the-job training and technical learning, apprentices will acquire the skills, knowledge and confidence required for a successful career in engineering. They will gain experience in technical activities – from electrical wiring and welding through to robotic and computer programming – as well as various administration functions in order to get an all-round understanding of a modern industrial business.
The career prospects for successful apprentices are very positive. Explained Nick Rance, Human Resources Development Manager for ATG, "With the government’s agenda firmly focused on building engineering skills, this is a great time for young people to join this thriving sector. What’s more, with some of the learning content specific to the business needs of ATG and there being significant input from mentors within the company who have specialist industrial experience – for example, in robotics – apprentices will be in an excellent position to continue their career within the group on completion of their chosen pathway."
Based in Silsoe, Bedford and Birmingham, ATG currently employs over 200 staff with a diverse skill base including welding and fabrication; CNC operation; electrical assembly and installation; electrical and mechanical design and engineering; software and robot programming; and administration. Concluded Andy Robinson, ATG’s CEO, "I began my own career as an apprentice, so I know the true value of grass-roots, on-the-job training. In my view, it’s the best possible platform for a career in engineering or management."
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