District Meetings – March 2016

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Engineering Industry Has Little to Cheer

ENGINEERING INDUSTRY HAS LITTLE TO CHEER

 

Little has changed for the engineering industry in Scotland in the first quarter of 2016 following a year which saw orders and output slide.

In their latest Quarterly Review of the industry, Scottish Engineering the industry support group recognises that the continuing slump in oil prices is affecting not only companies directly involved in oil and gas production but also those in the extensive supply chain.

The organisation’s Chief Executive, Bryan Buchan has welcomed the Scottish Government’s £70 million boost for the manufacturing industry; appreciating that this help will be for the medium to long term while the problems affected by the oil price require an immediate fix.

Looking at orders in the first quarter of this year (29%up,31%same,40%down) the figures show them remaining negative but there is a definite improvement over the last quarter of 2015.

After a considerable drop in staffing levels in the final quarter of 2015 the first three months of this year (26%up,48%same,26%down) show a similar number of companies reporting that are losing staff as are recruiting. This has to be seen as an improvement.

Another cause for concern is that there are fewer companies pushing ahead with plans for capital investment (16%up,58%same,26%down). Again some of these decisions are directly attributable to the problems arising from the oil and gas situation.

 

CLICK HERE FOR LATEST FOR QUARTERLY REVIEW MARCH 2016

 

 

For further information contact Colin McGill on 0141 221 3181 or 07976 224412 or visit the Scottish Engineering website on www.scottishengineering.org.uk

 

2015 Scottish Engineering Main Award

Awards Photo

Left to right: Bryan Buchan, Chief Executive, Scottish Engineering; Tom Sreeves, President, Scottish Engineering; Allan Currie, Spirit AeroSystems (Europe) Limited; and Jeremy Paxman.

SPIRIT AEROSYSTEMS (EUROPE) LIMITED

Spirit AeroSystems, based in Prestwick, employs around 1,000 staff in its Scottish operation. While part of an American multi-national, numbering 16,000 staff, Spirit’s Scottish base is protected by the establishment of a low-cost manufacturing facility in Malaysia, which comes under the responsibility of the Scottish European Vice-President. Crucially, the Prestwick facility also houses one of three global R&D teams. Grant support has already enabled a certain amount of re-shoring to be undertaken, and it is anticipated that this will increase in the future.

The customer base is truly ‘blue chip’ with the two largest being the household names Boeing and Airbus, with a forward order positioned for these companies being measured in years.

Not only a highly successful business in the here-and-now, Spirit is an active contributor to shaping the future of commercial aircraft through their R&D and design capability. The company accounts for a substantial proportion of Scotland’s aerospace GVA, and is at the leading edge of automation and advanced manufacturing for their sector.

PRESIDENT’S AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT

CLYDE UNION LIMITED, part of the SPX facility headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina took over what was Weir Pumps in Cathcart three years ago.

In the last year they won Manufacturer of the Year in the Prestigious Pumps Industry Awards and in the same awards, Emma Lambert won Engineer of the Year.

Cathcart currently employs 575 people who produce centrifugal and reciprocating pumps to the highest specification and standard for export throughout the world.

They were recently awarded the top ‘A’ grade supplier rating by China’s Nuclear Power Engineering Company.

DOOSAN BABCOCK

Doosan have enjoyed a very successful 2014, with revenues up by 25% year-on-year. The company has a history extending back to origins as a boiler systems pioneer in 1881.

The company’s credo places great emphasis on the ‘right’ behaviours and puts employees at the top of their priorities, valuing their individual and collective contributions, and inventing in their growth and development. (INHWA concept). For years they have invested in a class-leading apprenticeship programme, producing craftspeople of the very highest order, as well as sponsoring more advanced programmes, such as attainment of Chartered status and the Doosan MBA.

FMC TECHNOLOGIES works throughout Scotland employing more than 1000 people with its largest location being the subsea manufacturing facility in Dunfermline.

From 2013 through 2015 turnover increased by 18% from £285, in 2012 to £337m in 2013. Group pre-tax profits increased within the same period from £18.8m to £29.0m.

The company’s partnership with academia ranges from a primary school programme run by their employee group, the Education Links team, through high school where they work with students to promote STEM subject careers which they hope will change the perception of engineering and manufacturing industries. FMC piloted the ‘Engineer of the Future’ with Forth Valley College and Heriot-Watt University, which incorporates student projects and opportunities for university research.

Their local engineering graduate programme was recently ranked 17 out of 100 of the best companies for graduates to work for.

HYDRASUN LIMITED provides integrated fluid transfer, power and control solutions for energy, petrochemical, marine and utilities industries throughout the world.

A recent project in the North East of Scotland combined four premises into one modern facility which incorporates, on a five acre site, the HQ and central functions of the company.

One multi million pound investment has recently transformed the precision machine shop in Aviemore into a world class facility
The company has also successfully integrated technology and knowledge transfer techniques incorporating lessons learned within the aerospace industry to improve the processes and products used within the oil and gas industry.

CBC ELECTRIC MACHINES GROUP, including Parsons Peebles and Preformed Windings became the electrical machines platform for Clyde Blowers when it became part of the group in 2013.

In the three years since 2012 the group have almost doubled their full year revenue of £5.34million. With acquisitions they see 2015 as being a key year in their growth.

In 2014 they acquired Preformed Windings, a Sheffield operator since which time they have seen a 35% increase in sales. Part of this success is down to investments of £1.7million in new machinery when they moved the company to a new, larger, more efficient facility.
The company are constantly improving their training role and have embarked on a growing apprentice programme at their Rosyth plant. Both the Sheffield and Rosyth facilities have seen significant improvements and upgrades to their production lines allied to the implementation of Lean principles.

PEAK SCIENTIFIC

Winners of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise on no fewer than four occasions and with export sales extending to 125 countries around the world, Peak has grown its Scottish base over the last 14 years and has become the market leader in its field, thanks to a focus on service wherever its products are sold.

Continued investment in these overseas locations has seen consolidation and growth of new markets, exemplified by this year’s opening of a Thailand office.

SCOTTISH ENGINEERING/ INCORPORATION OF HAMMERMEN OF GLASGOW AWARD

DOUGLAS OSBORNE, of Thales Optronics Ltd

Over the years we have presented an award to a young Scottish engineer, decided in conjunction with the incorporation of Hammermen of Glasgow. This year we present the 22nd award in the series.

Douglas works for a company which produces state of the art optical equipment for use mainly by the Ministry of Defence. Our winner had the task of taking a piece of equipment currently in use by our armed forces – namely a target locator – and making it more user friendly by reducing its weight and making it more efficient.

As the senior mechanical engineer on the project he had control of the overall design as well as having to review and approve all of the component parts of the unit.

He reduced the weight by almost 50%, he increased the efficiency of the power systems and made the machine a must-have item, not only for the UK Forces but potentially as a top seller to our allied forces throughout the world.