This week is the 12th annual National Apprenticeship Week, a
week-long, country-wide celebration of apprenticeships. And here at MGS, we
believe there is a lot to celebrate.
Following the appointment of six new apprentices over the
last 18 months, they now account for more than 10 per cent of our total
And that’s not forgetting that each of our directors began their careers on apprenticeship programmes.
Ask Neil Garrity, our Operations Director, and he’ll tell you that not only are apprentices the key to our success, but they’re crucial to keeping Britain competitive in a global marketplace.
“Apprenticeships are absolutely critical to the future of
the engineering industry,” says Neil.
“The programme allows firms like ours to shape the next generation of workers
in terms of skills and attitudes, while the apprentices earn a professional
qualification and benefit from on-the-job, hands-on training.
“But while employing apprentices has been fantastic for our business. I think
some of our peers worry that an individual may walk away once they have
completed their training. Despite this small risk, our apprenticeship programme
has paid for itself ten times over.”
Neil says: “Employers who choose not to invest in apprentices are being left
behind. They struggle to source the skills they need while forward-thinking
companies like ours design bespoke programmes for the specific work we
undertake, creating our dream workforce.
“Our apprentices get the experience on the job and can really gain in skills
and confidence. Both our staff and our company can progress. It’s a win-win
The apprentices who have joined MGS in the last 18 months
range from school-leavers beginning their careers through to supervisors
looking to boost their skills sets.
They are: Lee Smith, Technician Apprentice; Steven Hyde, Toolroom Apprentice; Dillon Tennant, Electro Mechanical Engineer Apprentice; Simon Glasson, Leadership Apprenticeship; Glenn Miller, Leadership Apprenticeship; and Mark Hartley, Technician Apprentice.
Judson Smythe has been appointed to the board of directors at Lancashire-based moulding specialist MGS Technical Plastics as it plans its next stage of growth. Judson joined the company in the summer of 2016 and has now joined the board as Technical Director.
The 32-year-old brought international experience to the role, joining MGS from the Jasco Group in Durban, South Africa, where he was an Engineering Manager working with 50 injection moulding machines and a workforce of 250. He was previously an Apprentice Tool and Die maker, and later read Industrial Engineering at Durban University of Technology.
Now he will play an integral role in MGS’s bid to reach £10m turnover. He will oversee the technical capacity of factory operations and hold responsibility for tooling and new product introductions.
Since moving to its Blackburn home in a major £2m project, MGS has invested heavily in upgrading and adding to its equipment. The most recent purchase is a KraussMaffei KM900 dual platen machine with a 900-tonne capacity at a cost of £530,000. MGS has also invested a five-figure sum in Thingtrax, which uses the Internet of Things to monitor production around the clock and identify inefficiencies in production processes.
Judson said: “This is the most exciting time in the company’s history and I’m delighted to have the opportunity to play a role in taking it to the next level.
“With modifications to the factory and significant investment in new equipment, we have strong foundations on which we can build towards our ambitious growth targets.”
John Sturgess, Director at MGS said: “The most important resource for our company is the people we employ. Our skills, expertise and customer-first approach put us ahead of the competition.
“Judson is a shining example of what we’re all about. He is a great addition to our management team and we’re sure he’ll play a valuable role in our growth over the coming years.”
Written by Amanda Jackson, TigerFish PR
The MGS team took part in an “It’s a Knockout” Event at the weekend, based on the hit tv programme from the 70s.
The event was to raise money for Theo’s Warriors, a local charity dedicated to the support and treatment of children with cancer. The team, consisting of members from across MGS, got stuck into completing the 5 challenges and had a great day participating against the other 8 teams. The MGS Team ended up finishing fourth overall.