The Brompton Bicycle company’s spokesman was interviewed on Radio 4’s Today Programme recently bemoaning the lack of talent emerging from the UK’s schools and colleges. There is an engineering skills shortage.
And so it is in the aerosol industry. We reported in our May blog on what one member company is doing to tackle the shortage. Introducing an actively managed and highly effective apprentice scheme is something that many companies across the aerosol manufacturing stream are doing.
It’s that time of year when young people en masse are considering their future careers. As A level results are announced and GCSEs are anticipated eagerly, now is a timely moment for manufacturers in the aerosol and other chemical or technical industries to open their doors – and youngsters’ eyes – to the possibilities offered by a career in industry.
For those young people with a long summer holiday ahead of them who may for a variety of reasons not to go to university or further education, an apprentice scheme could be just the answer.
At the SCS (Society of Cosmetic Scientists) Scrub Up on Science competition finals at the Science Museum the other day, a member of the BAMA team met some 13 year old finalists who were passionate scientists, dedicated to pursuing their goals later in life and thrilled to have made some personal care products by using their impressive scientific knowledge.
Not all young people are as focused. Schools no doubt do their best but, as one school teacher said, ‘Science has a poor reputation in many schools. It’s just not seen as ‘cool’”.
So industry needs to do what perhaps schools cannot achieve and reach out to young people to show them that there is a variety of careers – at all levels in a manufacturing company – which they might consider. So whether it’s testing equipment or valves; can-making or filling; design or marketing… July and August could be a good time to promote the career opportunities within our wonderful sector.
As the latest filling figures showed, up again for the 4th successive year, the aerosol sector is vibrant and thriving and needs new applicants to keep it so.