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UK businesses and SMEs should take advantage of space sector growth

23/05/19 Brett Longden Consultant, Manufacturing & Operations

Small and Medium-sized enterprises are focused on returning manufacturing operations to the United Kingdom, according to research published by the Manufacturing Advisory Service.  

Manufacturing in the UK is experiencing a rebirth, with demand for locally manufactured products increasing over the last few years as UK businesses look to support local suppliers of components and systems which have been manufactured in the UK.

Reshoring UK is a unique collaboration of leading industrial engineering associations to assist manufacturers to connect with trusted, accredited suppliers capable of delivering products and services that match their requirements.

This structured approach supports OEMs and Tier 1 companies who need to fill gaps in their supply chains or to support the creation of new ones. This facility supports the high value and technical requirements of industries such as aerospace, automotive, rail, marine, energy and medical from conceptual design to complete product delivery for companies searching for UK-based support for their businesses.

Brett Longden, Redline Manufacturing and Operations Recruitment Consultant reviews factors which are driving businesses to return their manufacturing operations back to the UK.

“According to the Guardian, the UK economic growth picked up as stockpiling bolstered manufacturing. Manufacturing output was up 2.2% - the strongest quarterly performance since 1988, according to figures from the Office of National Statistics. With the economy growing for nine consecutive years, the decline in debt, employment reaching a record high and wages on the rise at the fastest pace in over a decade, the UK’s Manufacturing industry has the potential for significant growth in many sectors.”

Brett continues: “A great example of the opportunities that the UK has is in the space sector. The UK has the potential to become a world-class sustainable space industry leader if the Government and UK businesses work together to grasp the opportunities presented by the growth in the global and UK space arena.”

International leaders speaking at a two-day space conference at the Coventry-based Manufacturing Technology Centre underlined that the global space industry is booming and is forecasted to be worth £400 billion by 2030.

The MTC's Made for Space conference, aimed at encouraging UK businesses and SMEs to take advantage of space sector growth, featured leading international experts including representatives from NASA, the European Space Agency and the UK Space Agency. They explained the opportunities for UK manufacturers. The MTC already works with NASA and the European Space Agency on a variety of projects.

"Space technology is mostly resourced by the US, China, India and Russia, however, some areas of the space sector including satellite infrastructure, global positioning and automated intelligence is where the UK's expertise lie. With plans for a national space skills initiative to deliver the right professional people with the right skills, the UK has the potential to develop new capabilities such as in-space robotics. Also, advanced manufacturing technologies, in particular, additive manufacturing, presents further opportunities for UK companies.”

What types of manufacturing jobs will be in demand if the UK’s manufacturing companies take advantage of opportunities in the space sector?

The UK’s engineering and manufacturing sector are one of the broadest sectors, with 124,000 specialist workers required between now and 2024 to support industry segments such as space, nuclear, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, automation and robotics.

The UK’s space sector is comprised of public and private sector manufacturers involved in the production of goods and services via the exploration, understanding and utilisation of space. It has two main parts: the ‘upstream’ consists of organisations that manufacture (parts of) satellites; the downstream companies use satellites to provide telecommunications and broadcasting, weather-forecasting, and location and navigational services.

It is predicted that there will be a demand for skilled engineers in roles such as Systems Engineers, R&D Engineers, Software Engineer jobs and Software Support Engineers.

Manufacturing or Production Engineers jobs will also be in demand as the industry adopts new materials, manufacturing processes and automation. Manufacturing engineers in the space sector often work closely with design engineering teams to decide which components and modules can actually be built for space projects.

Manufacturing engineering jobs with Redline

If you’re a qualified manufacturing engineer or production engineer looking to elevate your career, apply to a variety of manufacturing jobs with Redline recruitment.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for talented professionals, register a vacancy or contact the team including Brett Longden on 01582 878841.