A cohort of manufacturing and engineering firms from across the UK celebrated on National Manufacturing Day 2022 (7th July), as they became the first ever companies to receive the Make UK Engineering Apprenticeships: Employer Kitemark Accreditation.
The Make UK Engineering Apprenticeships: Employer Kitemark Accreditation recognises exemplar employers of engineering apprentices – companies that have undergone a 12 month accreditation process that includes satisfaction surveys of existing engineering apprentices and benchmarking of the company’s apprenticeship scheme against industry best practices.
The Kitemark is achieved via involvement in the Engineering Apprenticeships: Best Practice Programme from Next Gen Makers, which is backed by the national manufacturing representative body Make UK. Companies are recognised with either the Gold standard Excellent Employer Kitemark status, or the Silver standard Aspiring for Excellence status.
On the 7th July, decision makers and engineering apprentices from companies (including KUKA UK, Weir Group, Wienerberger UK, Thomas Dudley, Eminox, Ishida Europe, AE Aerospace, Redhill Manufacturing, AE Aerospace, Brown McFarlane, Fablink Group and Alucast) celebrated as they received their award trophies and certificates of accreditation at a dedicated awards dinner held at the Make UK Technology Centre in Aston, Birmingham.
Stephen Phipson, Make UK CEO, commented: “It’s vital that would-be apprentices feel comfortable and confident when selecting an engineering employer, who will give them the right support and training throughout their apprenticeship and beyond.
“This kitemark complements and builds on the programmes that Make UK and Next Gen Makers have already developed which are key to helping place apprentices and enable employers to bridge the skills gap which is currently affecting the sector.”
Since its’ launch just over 12 months ago, the Next Gen Makers Engineering Apprenticeships: Best Practice Programme has continued to grow at pace – and now represents an online community of UK engineering and manufacturing firms committed to achieving excellence in how they attract, develop, and retain young engineering talent through best practice sharing, whilst working to achieve best practice benchmarks.
Companies now actively involved in the programme range from blue chip multinational firms to SME, family owned manufacturers. Those choosing to pursue Kitemark Accreditation fall into one of two annual accreditation cycles; June, and January, with the only qualifying criteria being a minimum of three current engineering apprentices.
All companies are re-accredited each year to retain the Kitemark or improve their achieved Kitemark level.