Queen's Award for Enterprise

Apprenticeships: Inspiring the engineers of tomorrow

Following the success of this year’s National Apprenticeship Week (9-13 March), Grainger & Worrall, a leading provider of high-precision casting technologies, has confirmed its commitment to developing the talent of tomorrow. While continuing its upskilling Experts Programme for existing employees, the company also aims to appoint a number of new graduates and apprentices every year. This means that, in a team of 500 staff split between two sites, there will always be individuals undergoing training, work placements or apprenticeships.

Executive director, Edward Grainger, comments: “With a wealth of talent and desire to succeed from today’s applicants, as an industry it’s up to all of us to provide support for future engineers.

“At Grainger & Worrall, identifying talented staff and expanding our recruitment pool is essential. We are committed to not only discovering these individuals, but also developing their abilities in a fast-paced environment.”

Graduate and apprenticeship programmes:

As well as delivering real-world experience and expert training, Grainger & Worrall’s graduate and apprenticeship programmes provide candidates with the opportunity to engage in a wide variation of challenging and complex projects for a global client base.

With a number of new individuals added to the team every year, both schemes follow the company’s ethos of providing opportunities for engineers – not only to fulfill existing recruitment needs, but to develop talented individuals for the future.

“Our team plays a key role in the design and supply of powertrain components for the world’s most desirable vehicles. Castings are central to what we do, but as a full-service supplier, our trainees have the unique opportunity to be involved in the early concept work all the way to finished machined parts and assembly,” continues Edward. “With all these processes in house, the ability to learn and gain vital hands-on knowledge is second to none.

“It’s demanding work and the stakes could not be higher when, for example, you are working to deliver another world championship motorsport title for an F1 or rally team, but the opportunity is also highly rewarding.”

Experts Programme:

Although a vital part of the business, it’s not just graduates and apprentices that continue to feed the company’s experienced team. Earlier this month, another 16 members of staff completed Grainger & Worrall’s Experts Programme – a year-long internal development course, designed specifically for staff looking to progress their skills further. Gaining seven different qualifications throughout, graduates experience training from some of the world’s leading high-precision casting technology professionals.

Edward explains: “Being at the forefront of what we do necessitates the continuous development of our staff. We cannot simply recruit to fulfill current needs – we must develop talented people into future leaders. Growing our own talent is an essential part of the business, without which we wouldn’t be able to excel in such a challenging marketplace.”

Sharing in Growth:

Alongside staff development, continued process innovation and widespread business improvement is also a priority for the company. In the past few weeks, Grainger & Worrall has been announced as the latest beneficiary of the government’s Sharing in Growth (SiG) programme. With Regional Growth Fund support of more than £1.2m, which is match funded in time, involvement in SiG will see the company benefit from expert training to implement a bespoke corporate development plan.

“Benefitting all departments across the business, SiG will help to further develop staff and drive significant expansion of the company as a whole, supporting our continued corporate growth,” adds Edward.
“Being accepted onto the SiG programme is extremely significant and will enable us to continue delivering best practice across our manufacturing, engineering and administration processes. This, combined with our commitment to discovering and developing talent, puts Grainger & Worrall in a highly admirable position.

“We’ve built our unrivalled experience and enviable reputation by investing in two important assets – our operations and our people. As world-leaders in precision casting technology, maintaining this position relies on fresh thinking and continued development. The future of high-performance engineering will surely bring a continually-changing environment, with a new set of priorities, so being ahead of the trend is critical to leading the field.”