Department for Business, Innovation and Skills
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New system launched to retain highly skilled employees across advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors

New system launched to retain highly skilled employees across advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors

News Release issued by the COI News Distribution Service on 13 July 2011

A new national web based system, Talent Retention Solution (TRS), will help match skilled employees facing redundancy to UK companies in growing sectors of advanced manufacturing and engineering who are recruiting, Minister for Business Mark Prisk announced today.

The easy to use system comes as a result of work undertaken by the Skills and Jobs Retention Group (SJRG) and Semta (the Sector Skills Council for Science, Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies) to support defence engineers who may be struggling to find work in today’s difficult economic climate.

Business and Semta are providing in kind funding for staff resources to support TRS implementation and the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) have awarded £450,000 under the Employer Investment Fund. The system is business led and will be fully funded by business from January 2012.

Following a short implementation phase, TRS will become fully operational by January 2012, when it is expected that over 1500 employers across the UK will have signed up to the system, ranging from large organisations in each sector to the smallest SMEs. The system will provide live data broken down by skills and geography.

Manufacturing and engineering companies which have already signed up to the system and who are recruiting over the coming year include Rolls Royce (1000), Siemens (500), Nissan (200) and Airbus (600). Supply chain companies will also be able to use the system for redeployment and recruitment.

Launching TRS, Minister for Business and Enterprise Mark Prisk said:

"The defence sector makes a substantial contribution to the country’s skills economy through high value jobs and as a key sponsor of apprenticeships and training. This easily accessible web based system will play a vital role in ensuring that these skills are not lost by redeploying highly skilled workers into growing sectors of advanced manufacturing such as automotive, energy, infrastructure and aerospace.”

Allan Cook, Chairman of Semta and the SJRG, said:

“The UK operates in a competitive international market. Success in these markets is dependent upon providing the best products, services and solutions for their clients. We rely totally on highly skilled staff to design, develop and produce these products and services. It is imperative for future success and economic growth that we do all that we can to retain, recruit and motivate our employees within the advanced engineering and manufacturing sectors.

“This new web based talent retention system will assist businesses in the high growth engineering and manufacturing sector to recruit the staff they need to compete successfully in the international market.”

At present the demand for skilled engineers far exceeds supply. TRS will complement existing commercial recruitment activity by creating a talent pool of skilled defence employees who need redeployment. The intention is to then expand the scope of the system so that it can redeploy skilled employees from across the advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors and will be an important tool in situations where large scale redundancies are occurring.

Notes to Editors

1. Allan Cook is chairman of W S Atkins, SELEX Galileo, Semta, Deputy Chairman of Marshalls and Chairman of the UKTI Advanced Engineering Advisory Board. He has widespread experience of defence and wider manufacturing, is widely respected throughout industry and is a passionate advocate for skills.

2. The SJRG was set up to ensure that wherever possible talented individuals leaving the defence industry can be retained within the UK's advanced manufacturing sector.

3. The Talent Retention Solution website is targeted at companies and organisations across the advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors. It will initially be focused on defence employees seeking redeployment and companies who are recruiting. It can be found at:

4. Semta estimates that around 205,000 jobs will need to have been filled in the AME sectors between 2010 and 2016 to replace people who retire and to meet demand from fast growing industries.

5. BIS's online newsroom contains the latest press notices, speeches, as well as video and images for download. It also features an up to date list of BIS press office contacts. See: for more information.

6. Leading companies, trade associations and Trade Unions across the spectrum of advanced manufacturing are supporting the implementation of TRS.


BIS Press Office

David Leslie
Phone: 020 7215 5080