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Metals leader signs skills pledge

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Metsec’s Stephen Tilsley (left) and Skills Minister, David Lammy MP.

Metsec is the latest organisation to adopt the government’s Skills Pledge which aims to address the shortage of skilled workers by investing in the development of employees’ skills.

Stephen Tilsley, Metsec Chief Executive, recently signed the Skills Pledge certificate in the presence of Skills Minister David Lammy MP and Lynn Tomkins, UK Director of Policy at Sector Skills Council, Semta, when they met to discuss skills needs in the metals, mechanical and electrical sector.

“A huge shift in skills levels is vital if the UK is to compete with other economies. Making the Pledge shows a company’s readiness to invest in people and work with employees,” said Ms Tomkins.

An early signatory of the Pledge, Semta is currently negotiating a sector agreement with the Learning and Skills Council which will secure training funding for employers, and aims to increase the number of companies adopting the Skills Pledge.

Mr Tilsley chairs the employer-led group which is driving the development of Semta’s Sector Skills Agreement (SSA) for the Metals, Mechanical and Electrical (MME) sector, to be launched in April.

One of the SSA priorities, which employers in the MME sector have identified, is to increase the number and quality of apprenticeships.

“While up-skilling the existing workforce to meet the skills needs of the business is important, the value we derive from our apprenticeships is immense,” said Mr Tilsley. “About 20% of our current workforce has come through our apprenticeship scheme and we aim to double this over the next 10 years.”

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