Although we remained open, served our existing customers, and manufactured medical equipment during the COVID-19 crisis, we have, as many have suffered with a reduced order book since May.
We furloughed some staff during May and needed to make further reductions during June. The second wave of furloughs was to be made up from mainly young people under 25, and I was concerned about the effect of the furlough on their training, self-esteem and mental health.
After much thought and discussions with our HR provider and HMRC, we started the Cambridge Rapid Training School for the Under 25’s and those with significant learning needs.
Since the beginning of June, members of staff have been learning new skills, training on machinery, and gaining new qualifications.
My staff have been undertaking:-
- Level 3 Health and Safety/Risk Assessments/COSHH
- Level 3 Manufacturing Productions and Operations
- Level 3 Adult Literacy/Numeracy
- Offline programming of Punching/Laser and Folding machines
- Machinery training on Punch/Laser and Press Brake
- Forklift Training
It has been so encouraging to see members of my staff growing through a very difficult period, some members had not sat at a desk for a considerable time but embraced the chance to learn. I was even told by previously ‘maths shy’ employee that he didn’t realise that he could enjoy maths.
These members of staff will return from furlough, more skilled, more confident and of considerable value to the company.