Skills Support for the Workforce (SSW) is a programme developed to upskill employees within small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire. They provide recognised accredited qualifications and bespoke training courses to enhance your employees’ skills, increase the competitiveness of your business and boost the local economy. Qommunicate is part of Serco’s network of expert organisations chosen to deliver the SSW programme in partnership with Stoke-on-Trent & Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). SSW is co-financed by the European Social Fund and the Education and Skills Funding Agency.
Qommunicate is engaged with German Manufacturer and Distributor, Hoppecke, supporting them in their ambitions to grow their UK market share. With their UK Headquarters based in Newcastle-under-Lyme, but distributing and servicing across the country, Hoppecke are a well-known brand and market leader for industrial batteries and innovative energy products.
One thing that makes Hoppecke stand out is their friendly and professional approach and diverse workforce. Traditionally the world of manufacturing and distribution is male dominated but in recent years this is slowly starting to change. Hoppecke is ahead of the curve and are proof that stereotypes should be ignored and be more about the right person for the right job, regardless of gender.
Natalie Bailey now works at Hoppecke and has not looked back. It might be due to her unusual fondness of industrial batteries and forklift trucks or the fact that she has worked her way up from administrator to a key member of the management team.
Jane Borkowski was drawn to Hoppecke because of its “strong international brand” and “thrives on working within a diverse range of people enjoying the balance of skills, experience and knowledge bought in from the different backgrounds”
HR Manager, Lynne Morris commented “Hoppecke has significant growth plans and in order to equip the leadership team to achieve this, formal management and leadership training is absolutely necessary. It is essential for the business to maintain a competitive edge. We have selected Qommunicate to join us on the journey because we share common values and they have the knowledge and expertise to support our growth”
Jason Howlett, Regional Managing Director – Northern Europe commented “With over 50% of our office/support/leadership team consisting of women, they make a massive contribution to the business at every level and in every aspect of our operations and I would definitely like to attract more women into our front line service engineering roles and manufacturing roles. Women are equal and I never think about men or women as groups because I have an excellent team of people who all work hard in their own individual way and they are individuals - not a gender, race, religion or anything else. What I value most is the ability to think and look at things differently and having employees from a variety of backgrounds means we get the very best solutions to business issues to ensure we keep progressing”
For Qommunicate, it has been refreshing to work in an industrial environment that is not male dominated.
Qommunicate is delivering a bespoke training plan that is available to all 60 staff within the business, all completely tailored to the manufacturing industry.
Taking into account skills gaps and recognising the results of the Training Needs Analysis, Qommunicate is delivering a selection of subjects:
- Leadership and Management
- Customer Service
- Health and Safety and
This training will help ensure that Hoppecke retains its workforce and provides them with the opportunity to progress within work (and in education/apprenticeships as appropriate).
To find out about accessing fully funded training for employees through the Skills Support for the Workforce programme businesses can contact us.