How strong partnerships can deliver professional development and social value
As part of the Royal International Air Tattoo (RIAT), two Artic apprentices were invited by the RAF to attend the show at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire. They joined a team of young RAF engineers who were tasked with stripping down a standard road car and converting it to a fully functioning race car for the RAF F2 Sidecar Team Powered by Artic. The engineering team had the weekend to fulfil the task, with guidance provided by senior RAF engineers who were overseeing the event. In addition, the apprentices were also able to meet senior directors from Artic, as well as some of the RAF F2 Sidecar Team Powered by Artic.
Encouraging apprentices to take part in STEM activities such as these is an important part of Artic’s strategy to develop a workforce with the right skills for industry. In addition, engineering experience and excellence underpins professional and successful maintenance delivery, which is the foundation of Artic’s well-respected reputation. The event was the perfect opportunity to expose the apprentices to a wide range of engineering processes and skills to support this aim. Not only would this help them develop their knowledge and capabilities, but it also provides an interesting project to further support their enthusiasm for engineering. As well as the practical engineering skills gained from the project, the experience of working within an RAF team also provides excellent insight into how teams work, how to lead a team, and the importance of communication between engineers to enable the work to be completed in such a short period of time.
Delivering Social Value
Investing in the future of the business through apprenticeships is a key focus for Artic. Not only does this help staff achieve their ambitions, it is also how Artic is ensuring the creation of a sustainable workforce and doing their part to deliver on the government’s Social Value Model. As well as engineering, apprenticeships are open to all employees across the business, enabling them to gain both a qualification and sound theoretical knowledge to support their roles. In turn, this enables Artic to create better, higher-paying jobs to not only attract and retain the talent needed to grow, but also to help narrow disparities between communities. This is an essential part of the government’s Tackling Economic Inequality theme.
Furthermore, STEM outreach activities such as the RAF Sidecar Challenge also help provide equal opportunities, enabling young people from our communities to be supported without prejudice or bias to achieve their full potential. Quality opportunities such as these provide more routes for progression for apprentices, which also assists with staff retention. To deliver on the Equal Opportunities theme in the Social Value Model, a range of quality training and upskilling opportunities such as this event are being implemented by Artic.
These activities also support improved health and wellbeing so employees can thrive at work. Providing interesting and high-quality learning opportunities supports employee satisfaction, helping to protect mental health and support wellbeing. As employees continue to improve their skills and progress to higher paying jobs, that will also help drive improved employee satisfaction and wellbeing – another key theme within the Social Value Model. However, all three themes are also key components of Artic’s Corporate Social Responsibility Policy.
A Platform for Engagement
Using the novelty of the sidecar challenge to pique the interest of the visitors at the RIAT provided a good opportunity to engage with local communities and show them the vast range of engineering applications. In turn, it provided a platform to showcase the careers opportunities available in both STEM subjects and construction, which helps address economic inequalities by providing career pathways and development opportunities for young people.
Developing the next generation of engineers is a responsibility that Artic takes seriously. The Artic Apprenticeship scheme has been in place since 1998 and is recognised as an industry leader by both the local community and clients. Since its introduction, many of Artic’s senior technical staff and managers have been cultivated through the programme. As part of these efforts, Artic sponsors the RAF F2 Sidecar Team, who compete in racing events held by the RAF Motorsports Association (RAFMSA). By doing so, strong relationships are developed both with RAFMSA and the wider RAF as a whole. This collaboration is being used to illustrate and promote the opportunities available to young people within engineering disciplines and facilities management. Building on this relationship, Artic have scheduled joint events with the RAF in local schools and colleges for the rest of the year and into next. During these events, STEM subjects and the career opportunities they provide can be shown to young people just starting out in life, to help inspire the engineers of the future and support the wider industry as a whole, not just Artic.
If you would like more information on how your organisation can partner with us to inspire the next generation of engineers and deliver social value, please contact us .