Think Lifting

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Think Lifting

One of the biggest worries for the Lifting Industry is where is the next generation of the workforce coming from? With the LEEA Think Lifting project, working in association with LHI Magazine, the association is engaging directly with local schools to show young people the career options available in the Lifting Industry.

Like other parts of engineering, the Lifting Industry needs to recruit new talent to ensure its future sustainability. There are endless career opportunities available to today’s young people but unfortunately lifting is too often outshined by higher profile careers, which is resulting in a short supply of essential skilled engineers and technicians.

As an industry, we need to generate a louder buzz, pitch ourselves to younger people and provide an accessible pathway to enter the sector for those who are interested. We need to start by engaging with schools.

The quality and availability of careers advice has a huge impact on the choices young people make for their future. However, careers advisors generally have little knowledge, at best, of lifting sector and so it follows that they tend to promote the careers they do know about. Advisors cannot be experts in everything but they can ‘signpost’ careers. Their skills are trying to elicit from young people what their interests are and suggest ways in which they might like to explore related career areas. It is important for careers advisors to know more about the lifting sector because it involves the sort of skills that will appeal to a great many young individuals.

Constrained funding has seen teachers replace many qualified careers advisors. This means we must give pupils and their teachers meaningful exposure to the dynamic Lifting Industry, which operates in a global environment. Inspirational engineering-focused engagement activities can help to ensure young people experience real life applications of engineering and are well-informed about the many doors they can open through their subject choices.

This is the premise behind LEEA’s Think Lifting schools engagement programme. It aims to bring the opportunities of entering the Lifting Industry to the attention of pre-option secondary school children (ages 11-13) through linking them to the local lifting sector. LEEA will provide interested members with free a suite of tools including ‘experiments’ to provide demonstrations and also to allow pupils themselves to get involved in solving problems. There will also be videos introducing students to our occupation opportunities.

We see this programme creating further demand for the new apprenticeship currently being developed, which will act as a pathway to channel new skilled recruits into our sector.

Because lifting is ubiquitous, this apprenticeship will apply to all sectors where lifting is involved – including the entertainment, medical, aeronautical, construction, logistics, manufacturing, oil and gas, offshore, renewable energy, the military.

By promoting the industry and its role in so many varied sectors, we tell school children: ‘This is where we work, so you might like to consider the apprenticeship in that particular sector’. It opens up all kinds of career possibilities.

The industry is constantly evolving with the onset of new materials, new innovative ideas, better ways of doing things and the inclusion of modern technologies. As valued as they are, older generations within the workforce are not as in tune with these areas as younger people.

The Lifting Industry can inspire imagination. Businesses, careers advisors, schools and parents need to work together to get young people interested. The Apprenticeship linked to Think Lifting programme is a fitting initiative for LEEA’s 75th anniversary year, which is all about looking to the future. We can look forward to these schemes not only bringing young people into our industry but also acting as a conduit for delivering the new ideas and fresh thinking that will bring the industry into the 21st century.

If you wish to join in with LEEA and get involved with local schools to help spread the cause, please contact or call the team on 01480 432 801.

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