Engineering jobs in Scotland
SKILLS GAP IS A GROWING THREAT TO SCOTS ENGINEERING
An engineering forum hosted by Kilmarnock College addressed concerns among key industry figures in Scotland that the industry’s future could be under threat from a growing skills gap.
Many companies are concerned that between 40 and 60 per cent of skilled workers in the engineering sector will be due to retire within the next 10 years, leaving a huge gap in the industry.
As a result, Kilmarnock College is working in partnership with local industry figures, to address these issues.
Industry leaders and local businesses are now proactively seeking to forge closer links with schools by offering work placements for engineering students – with a view to considering apprenticeship schemes.
Dr Peter Hughes, current Chief Executive of Scottish Engineering – the major sectoral support and lobbying organisation for the manufacturing engineering industry – addressed delegates at the event and highlighted the importance of a working partnership between employers and educational institutions to address the issue.
He said: “Kilmarnock College should be congratulated for looking to tackle this important issue, particularly for engaging with employers to seek their views regarding the potential skills shortage.”
David Watson, Curriculum Manager for Engineering at Kilmarnock College, said: “There has never been a better opportunity in recent years for 16-19 year olds to enter into an engineering apprenticeship in Ayrshire.
“Companies need to recruit more apprentices now in order to offset skilled employees retiring in the foreseeable future. We will be working closely with local schools to develop programmes that allow students to attend two days at College and three at school in order that they are more prepared for apprentice positions. This will involve guaranteed work placement and interview by the companies involved.”