Support from Semta helps components firm TS Tech survive recession and face future challenges

Swindon-based TS Tech, a company that supplies interior components to the automotive industry, is hoping to take advantage of the economic upturn after improving the skills of its workforce. To better compete in the market, TS Tech called upon Semta, the Sector Skills Council for Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies, to help the business boost profits and cut waste. At the start of 2009 TS Tech UK faced the stark reality of recession when its biggest customer shut down its production line for four months. Instead of making further redundancies, TS Tech decided it was the ideal time to invest in the skills of its workforce. With the help of Semta it completed a comprehensive business analysis to identify any skills gaps before implementing training programmes that have led to more than 400 qualifications for staff at all levels. These have included 204 Business-Improvement Techniques qualifications, 87 Computer Literacy Improvement Skills courses, 92 general management courses and 21 driver development qualifications. Semta also secured nearly £165,000 funding on behalf of TS Tech to help pay for the ambitious training programme that also included literacy and numeracy assessments for almost all of the firm’s 460 employees. Malcolm Corcoran, Administration Director at TS Tech, explained: “With Semta’s help we were able to utilise non-productive time to improve the skills levels of our employees. As well as improving morale and motivation, the training programmes have also helped TS Tech to retain a skilled workforce whilst cutting waste and increasing profit. “Without the support provided by Semta, we would not have been able to develop our employees in the way we have, improving skills from the shop floor to higher management. More importantly we are now ready to grow the business and embrace the challenges ahead as the recession ends.” TS Tech UK is part of TS Tech Co Limited, a company founded in 1960 as a manufacturer of motorcycle seats. It now has operations in 11 countries and has grown to become a leading manufacturer of automotive seats and interiors. Commented Philip Whiteman, Semta Chief Executive: “Motor manufacturing was particularly badly hit by the recession and so we were delighted to offer our support to an important company within the automotive supply chain. I’m confident that the new skills developed at TS Tech will help the company to remain competitive whilst taking advantage of opportunities that will arise as the economy recovers.” - E N D S –

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