The Manufacturers Optimism for the future

The 2016 Annual Manufacturing Report (AMR), published by Hennik Research, demonstrates once again the resilience of British manufacturing, despite facing domestic and international challenges.

The steel industry has shrunk by around 9% this year and closures have hit the headlines, but manufacturers are, broadly, confident about the future. The survey this year found the second-highest positive outlook since the Report began, in 2008.

Manufacturers are much less positive - indeed, strongly negative - regarding skills and, particularly, the preparedness for work of young school and college leavers. The overwhelming majority of respondents find them "poorly" or "very poorly" prepared for the working environment.

Employment opportunities are widespread and across the board, from administration and IT to engineering and management. Training, including formal apprenticeships, is ongoing - manufacturers are prepared to invest in their workforce, including youngsters, and 40 to 60% reported that they have given first jobs' to school and college leavers, and/or university graduates.

Investment is trending towards the strategic' end of the spectrum. Manufacturers are seeking to develop new products, upgrade their systems and automate processes.

Once again, the Government's handling of the economy is regarded as good overall, but less so when it comes to manufacturing, specifically.

For the first time this year, the Annual Manufacturing Report asked about the Internet of Things (IoT). The response indicates that manufacturers are yet to be convinced and are adopting a wait and see' attitude.

Manufacturers are hugely concerned about the suitability for work' of young school and Further Education (FE) College leavers. The responses are even worse this year than previously: approaching three-quarters (73%) of respondents said that 16-year old school leavers were either "poorly" or "very poorly" prepared for work, and even more (77%) reported that 17/18-year-olds were.

FE College leavers were more highly regarded, with one-third saying they found them well prepared - but over half were reported to be "poorly" or "very poorly" prepared. University graduates were, again, more highly regarded; more than half (55%) said that they were "well" or "very well" prepared for work.

to read more source: The Manufacturer 

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