Siemens UK is opening a ‘junior factory’ for apprentices at its facility in Congleton. It will be run commercial and technical apprentices aged 16 to 21.
The junior factory is a type of small factory within a factory. The apprentices will be responsible for sourcing and supply chain management, production of sub-assemblies, quality management, budgeting and transfer pricing alongside performance management.
The point of the initiative is to train the apprentices in business management as well as engineering. It differs from the usual path of allowing them to concentrate on the technical issues and leaving thoughts of management until later in their careers. The junior factory is open to all apprentices and graduates in the organisation.
There is a head of the junior factory and those involved wrote a business case about how they see the factory working. They then presented this to the senior management board.
“This is a really innovative project, and the aims are very clear – let’s train up our young apprentices for the long-term challenges they will face in their careers while fostering a culture of innovation, autonomy and crucially – entrepreneurship,” said Roland Aurich, CEO of Siemens UK and Ireland.
“We need to make a bold statement in Siemens and across industry – be an engineering apprentice and you can go from the shop floor to the top floor and schemes like this help young people understand how an engineering apprenticeship can lead to a rewarding career,” he added.