As an ever-expanding organisation, industrial air filtration specialist Filtermist recognises the importance of ensuring effective succession planning across all aspects of its operation. The company places great value on both up-skilling its existing workforce and employing recruits who can be trained on the job.
As National Apprenticeship Week 2020’s theme this year is ‘Look Beyond’, we decided to speak to some of our own Apprentices to find out what made them look beyond traditional routes of education and go for an Apprenticeship with Filtermist.
Apprentice Engineer - Service/LEV
“For the first 15 months of my Apprenticeship I was based full time at The Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology (MCMT). I started my HNC in January this year and now I spend just a day a week at MCMT and the rest of my time based at Filtermist.
I chose an Apprenticeship over other routes such as university, as I can learn on the job whilst getting paid and without any added debt. So far I believe I've made the right decision and I love my job as I get to travel all over the country and meet lots of new people.
My job involves helping out my fellow engineers if a job needs two people for health and safety purposes. I’m also out on site a lot so I can learn more about what the job entails and I sometimes drive from the factory to engineers on site if they need a part or anything which they don’t have to hand.
All of my colleagues are really supportive, which helps a lot when it comes to learning new things.
My goal is to move into LEV servicing and gain more qualifications such as my P601/2.”
Apprentice Design Engineer
“I am currently working on my Level 3 Product Design/Engineering qualification at The Marches Centre of Manufacturing Technology (MCMT) on day release, as well as Level 3 NVQ which is completed at work through projects. I will then be going onto my HNC in January 2021 and hopefully further qualifications after this.
I wanted to gain valuable skills and an understanding of engineering along with a working experience – and with my Apprenticeship I’m able to do this and ‘earn and learn’ without any debts unlike going to university.
Filtermist also provide other ‘on the job’ development opportunities such as LEV P601/602 and Solidworks training. This means I’m picking up the skills I need to do my job which is to assist with the development and design of new or existing products/parts, to help overcome engineering issues and for continuous improvement of Filtermist products/parts.
My favourite thing about my role is that I am able to be creative with my work and overcome engineering difficulties which I find challenging but enjoy! I get to work alongside other engineers which enables me to gain valuable knowledge as well as having a customer interaction which gives me the opportunity to travel. At Filtermist, the support is always there when needed and the company and my colleagues are helping me to work towards my goals.
My short-term goal is to complete & pass my level 3, HNC & even possibly an HND/Degree & become a qualified design engineer/product designer with Filtermist. I’m also part of the internal Rising Stars Programme which is helping me towards my end goal – to go into a management role and become an even more valuable asset to Filtermist.”
“I am currently studying towards my Level 3 Diploma in Accounting and I attend Telford College one day every week. I have previously completed my Level 2 Accounting on a full time college course but didn’t enjoy it. Working as a Filtermist Apprentice is something I enjoy a lot more and studying whilst working in an office environment is giving me invaluable on-the-job experience.
My daily tasks include processing, posting and authorising purchase invoices and credit notes, and reconciling account statements. My favourite thing about being an Apprentice at Filtermist is the other employees here; everyone is so welcoming and supportive, I feel comfortable going to them if I am stuck on anything.
In the future I would like to complete as many levels as I can within accounting and then progress onto doing my ACCA and become a fully qualified accountant.”
As well as Billy, Tia and James, Filtermist also has a Mechatronics Engineering Technician Apprentice, Ashlee Marsh, currently working towards his Level 2 & 3 qualifications at the MCMT.
Ensuring its employees are equipped with the skills required to ensure Filtermist retains its position as a global market leader is no mean feat, as CEO James Stansfield explains; “As most manufacturers will tell you, there is a shortage of manufacturing skills in the UK. Something we’re keen on doing here is developing employees through the business.”
The Marches Centre of Manufacturing & Technology (MCMT) boasts the very latest in engineering technologies including five Bridgeport Hardinge machine tools supplied by long-standing Filtermist customer Engineering Technology Group (ETG). All five machines have been fitted with Filtermist oil mist filters to ensure the apprentices benefit from a clean working environment.
All MCMT apprenticeships are run by experienced training provider In-Comm Training, rated as ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.
Filtermist is best known for its UK manufactured oil mist filters but recent developments mean the company now offers a wide range of products and services designed to deal with other contaminants including dust, fume, smoke and VOCs (volatile organic compounds).
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