I recently visited Dave Barnett – Learning and Development Manager, and Engineering Apprentices Steven and Mo (pictured above), at Yamazaki Mazak UK. Yamazaki Mazak are manufacturers of CNC machines, they are leaders in the manufacture of advanced technology solutions including Multi-tasking, 5-axis, milling, CNC controls, and automation.
Developing engineers of the future is something Mazak take very seriously, they offer a comprehensive apprenticeship programme across a wide range of disciplines. This training package is designed to attract, train, and retain enthusiastic talent with fresh ideas. Knowing that their apprentices have been trained in the skills and most up to date knowledge relevant to the apprentice’s role is crucial in delivering quality products to Mazak’s future customers in a timely manner. In addition Mazak are always looking for managers and leaders of the future, and apprenticeship is a great way of spotting potential of the future.
Apprenticeship schemes offer a number of different routes and qualifications, as with mist organisations no one size fits all. Apprenticeships allow the flexibility to train a diverse workforce against nationally recognised qualifications. Mazak offer business administration at levels two and three. For their production side they offer pathways in engineering / manufacturing in Mechanical, Electrical, Machining, and Sheet Metal at level three. The length of apprenticeship offered is dependent on pathway chosen. The business administration apprenticeship is completed over a two year period, and the production apprentices are between three and four years.
Currently there are 56 apprentices enrolled on the scheme, and Mazak are looking to recruit a further 15-20 this year. For potential applicants, typical qualifications expected of you would be 5 GCSE’s at grade C or higher, including Maths and English. That said, all applicants are tested prior to being offered an apprenticeship which gives Mazak a better understanding of your strengths.
The types of courses apprentices would be expected to complete during their apprenticeship is dependant of pathway chosen. However, all Health and Safety courses are mandatory. Mazak arrange for their suppliers to put on courses for their apprentices in their relevant areas. For future managers, Mazak offer leadership courses.
I was given a tour of the facility by third year apprentice Steven Jones. He is completing a mechanical apprenticeship at Mazak and is currently working on one of the lines assembling part of one of many of the CNC machines produced by the UK facility. His uncle works at Mazak and before joining Steven had completed some photography work experience at the facility. Steven told me “my parents and sister struggled to support me when I first applied to Mazak to start my apprenticeship. My sister was studying at the sixth form college at the time. My family did not know much about apprenticeships but thought that A levels were the best way forward. Three years down the line and my parents are now trying to find an apprenticeship for my sister. They support my 100% and are very proud of what I have achieved. I wouldn’t change anything if I had my time again. This has been the best decision I’ve made.”
During the facility tour I also met Mo who is a second year maintenance apprentice. Mo moved to the UK from Sudan a few years ago. He decided he wanted to become an engineer and that an apprenticeship was the best way to gain experience with on the job training.
Both of these apprentices are extremely grateful of the opportunities given to them and it is obvious to me that they are making the most of their apprenticeship to ensure they have learnt as much as possible by the time they finish.
If you would like to find out more about an apprenticeship at Yamazaki Mazak UK, please download and complete the application form found on the website www.mazakeu.co.uk, then go to the careers tab in the top right hand corner.
Until next time! For regular updates, follow @No1_apprentice