Learn from others

There has been no escaping the hard times of the past year, the economic downturn has been difficult for many businesses.

Arial">Advancements in technology which are difficult to keep up with as new devices are constantly being developed also make it difficult for companies to keep abreast of technological changes and remain competitive as they need to acquire the skills and knowledge to maintain their competitiveness.

For smaller businesses the lack of customer spending, increased competition and the advancements in technology are adding pressure for companies to stay ahead of the game and there is a recognised need to bring something different to the market.

Training unquestionably provides one of the prime keys to future prosperity but the methods once used to train are no longer suitable for a modern company.

Ultimately, having the right skills and knowledge allows companies to exploit new technologies, new markets and new techniques or processes enabling them to differentiate themselves. It is important that companies look at developing the base skills of their workforce such as reading, writing and maths along with technical skills if they are to excel in increasingly global markets. Having the right skills available within the workforce will be vital in ensuring the industry is in a powerful position for years to come.

Proskills UK Group comprising the Sector Skills Council (SSC) for the process and manufacturing sector, and its subsidiary, National Skills Academy for Materials, Production & Supply (better known as Proskills Academy)  helps to raise the profile of the importance of skills and sets the skills standards and qualifications for the industry and acts as the bridge between employers and Government on skills and training.

It is Proskills mission to help you address skills gaps and to provide solutions that will help businesses build the skills infrastructure needed to facilitate business growth and the ability to diversify into new markets.

This is firstly about you having access to the right kind of training and, secondly, undertaking industry relevant training that adds real value to your bottom line.  Proskills helps employers to face these challenges whether it’s by looking at investment in staff training or looking at business improvement techniques that can help drive business performance.

Proskills Academy is there to encourage and assist the spread of best practice by allowing employers to access to a range of products and services designed to help achieve greater productivity and profitability by improving workforce and business performance through skills.

One of those services is the recently launched series of Industry Xchange events which aim to encourage the sharing and adoption of best practice by arranging visits to UK companies recognised for their excellence and success. This is a fantastic way for companies to gain invaluable insight into key areas of business improvement which they can adopt and learn from.

Exemplar companies in the areas of environmental management, or leadership rarely give visitors an insight into how they have achieved their successes but learning from others provides a rarely available short cut to best practice where managers can view and discuss initiatives at first hand and evaluate how their operations compare.  Everyone will take something back to their own business from attending any of these visits.

Ardagh Glass are hosting an event on Sustainable Management Development to improve Business Performance and  Johnson Tiles, the UK’s leading ceramic tile manufacturer who have been a pioneer of environmental management in the glazed ceramics industry and were the first white wares ceramic company to gain the ISO 14001 standard, have signed up to host and discuss how to reduce business costs with cutting edge environmental performance improvements.

To remain at the forefront of world manufacturing, which too often we forget we are, we must invest in the skills of our workforce and ensure their skills are transferable and appropriate to business needs thus allowing people to become multi specialists in their chosen careers.

We have heard time and time again about how investing in training is the key to the future of the industry but investing in the right training will ensure your workforce has the skills it needs to utilise the developments in new technology and new markets. However, companies also need to think outside the box and at different ways they can diversify to stay ahead of their competition.

By getting involved with Proskills Academy you can play an active role in ensuring that the right provision is in place to meet business demands. Events like Industry Xchange, which are cross sector, where you can learn from market leaders in various areas of business performance about how they have achieved success, where they faced difficulties and where the benefits have been, allow you to take their experiences and apply them to your business.

So, take control and invest in a skills strategy to help your business to become more profitable, more competitive, reduce costs and waste, improve quality and become more efficient as well as helping to improve the skills of your workforce.

For more information or to book onto an event visit the Proskills Academy website, www.mps-academy.co.uk

Alternatively contact Proskills Academy at customerservices@mps-academy.co.uk or on 01235 432030

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