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25 January 2013

Sometimes we in the UK do not help ourselves when it comes to publicising the vitality of our manufacturing industry and our many successes.With that in mind, the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA) has initiated

Sometimes we in the UK do not help ourselves when it comes to publicising the vitality of our manufacturing industry and our many successes.With that in mind, the Manufacturing Technologies Association (MTA) has initiated the Manufacturing Industry Awards.Graham Dewhurst, director general, explains

It is often said in manufacturing that we are one of the UK's best kept secrets. In a world where people can say with a straight face that we are a post-industrial economy, and that manufacturing will inevitably end up in the low-cost economies of the East, many assume that manufacturing in this country is finished.

Of course as a reader of IPE you will know that that is not true, but sometimes we do not help ourselves when it comes to publicising the vitality of the industry and celebrating our success.

The MTA is developing the Manufacturing Industry Awards event through a collaborative approach with the sector's other Trade Associations, with the aim of strengthening the engineering agenda - both socially and politically - and to demonstrate the significance and success of the industry, and its heritage, in the UK.

Each of the Award categories will be sponsored by a Trade Association and the competition is set to be strong. It is free and simple to enter the awards, and the shortlisted entries will be voted for online, by the manufacturing public.

There is also a scholarship award - the AMTRI Scholarship, a £10,000 fund to promote excellence in machinery development and engineering manufacturing. The Scholarship, open to professional and graduate engineers undertaking Continuous Professional Development, aims to encourage cooperation between industry and the higher education sector.

Success in manufacturing is as varied as the sector, and the categories for the Manufacturing Industry Awards reflect this.With a category to recognise excellent apprentices and graduates, one to celebrate excellent 'green' credentials, one for outstanding training, and two to show excellent partnership working - either as a supplier, or with a sub-contractor, the categories really are broad. A further description of the categories, and their sponsoring organisation, are listed below: Young Engineer of the Year Sponsored by the Engineering Industries Association, EIA. the Young Engineer of the Year award is open to engineers who demonstrate outstanding commitment, achievement or innovation in engineering.

Entrants must be 25 years or under, and show great potential to be a future leader.

Employing companies, suppliers or individuals can nominate their Young Engineer of the Year, and the shortlist will be judged online, by the industry.

Drive for Sustainable Manufacturing Sponsored by the Confederation of British Metalworking, (CBM), the Drive for Sustainable Manufacturing award aims to recognise a dramatic improvement in a company's environmental credentials. This may include a business change that has resulted in waste reduction, or reduced energy or water consumption, or shows improved recycling credentials. It may also include a switch to more sustainable materials or services. Entries are welcome from manufacturers, suppliers and subcontractors, and the shortlist will be voted on by the industry.

Best Training Scheme Sponsored by the Gauge and Tool makers Association, (GTMA), the Best Training Scheme award identifies those training programmes that are both innovative and deliver results. Training programmes that can show clear development of both the youngest or newest entrants into the industry, as well as long-standing staff, are eligible. Businesses can enter their own training scheme, or nominate a partner's scheme (client, supplier, contractor) and staff can also nominate training schemes that they feel are worthy of the award.

Best Supplier Partnership Sponsored by the British Gear Association, (BGA), the Best Supplier Partnership celebrates successful relationships between a customer and supplier. This can include manufacturer and subcontractor relationships and suppliers into sub-contractors companies; essentially any business partnership that has delivered excellence in innovation, sustainability, value or delivery.

Entries must be submitted on a partnership basis, with both parties endorsing the submission.

Most Dynamic Sub-Contractor Sponsored by the British Turned Parts Manufacturers Association, (BTMA), the Most Dynamic Sub-Contractor award recognises the positive difference that excellent and forward-thinking subcontractors can have on industry. The award is specifically looking for extraordinary subcontractors who go above and beyond to integrate and, importantly deliver, to help businesses succeed. Although entries are welcome from sub-contractors, those subcontractors nominated by user-companies will stand out from the group.

The online entry for the Awards is now live at www.mtaawards.com (final date for submission is Friday 4th February 2011).

Voting will be open for the manufacturing public, via the website, between 8th and 25th February, 2011.

The Awards ceremony will be held in conjunction with the MTA's Annual Dinner, and will be staged at the ICC Birmingham on 9th March 2011. The black-tie event is sure to attract hundreds of colleagues from the manufacturing sector. To book your place, visit www.mtaawards.com or phone the MTA on the number below.