For EDM, a leading supplier of training simulators to the civil aviation and defence markets, a strategic move into new markets and a string of contract victories have heralded a wave of fresh employment opportunities.
The Manchester-based group has created 20 posts this year across its production, project planning, customer support and administrative teams, with a number of these having been filled through internal promotions.
The new arrivals have also included a cohort of apprentices, who began their four-year training programme in September 2023.
EDM states that its recruitment programme means its workforce has increased to 134 this year.
Based at a 100,000sq ft site in Newton Heath, EDM manufactures and assembles training simulators for clients in sectors including civil aviation, defence and rail. The company also has an aviation training academy at the complex.
The board of EDM undertook a strategic review following the pandemic which led to complementary acquisitions alongside the development of new products and a move into additional manufacturing sectors, including aircraft parts, composites and steel fabrication.
So far during 2023, EDM has landed contracts with airlines including KLM, Jet2, JetBlue, United Airlines and All Nippon Airways, as well as with Network Rail, BAE Systems, the Indian Air Force and the Royal Danish Air Force.
Tony Bermingham, EDM’s managing director, said: “All these additional revenue streams will provide opportunities for further job creation as the business continues to grow.
“We are confident that 2024 looks like being a busy year for EDM, and this could mean recruiting between 30 and 40 engineers and professionals to support ongoing projects.”
The company also added to its portfolio in 2021 by acquiring RGF Support, a training and infrastructure support business operating at major UK airports, and earlier this year by acquiring SkyPeople, which provides training for airline cabin crew.
Bermingham added: “Young people and apprentices are the lifeblood of the business. Ten years ago, the average age on the shop floor was the mid-50s. Today, due to our apprenticeship programme, the average age is in the mid-40s.
“Our apprentices not only give us the ability to maintain our high-end traditional engineering skills. Younger people also bring with them new ideas and technology, thereby broadening our capability.
“The upside for our apprentices is that they can earn while they learn, and we have had a number who have continued on to degree level.
“I am a great believer in life-long learning, and we will always support our employees in that goal.”
Bermingham continued: “EDM has always had very low staff turnover, with many of our team having worked in the business for over 30 years.
“I think this is attributable to the variety of interesting work, the possibility to travel the world, the ability to develop one’s skills and the opportunity to grow.
“In addition, with a family and teamwork philosophy and great people to work with, it’s a fantastic place to be.
“Our management ethos is one of support and encouragement, and there are no barriers to how far anyone can progress.
“We will always look to promote internally first, if our employees have the required skillset or can be trained to fulfil the role.
“This in turn fosters loyalty and teamwork within the organisation, and it’s extremely pleasing to develop our own talent and see people rise through the ranks.”
As part of the company’s staff retention and recruitment strategy, EDM has introduced a series of new employee benefits including flexible working, a four-day week for production staff, an employee assistance programme, an employee of the month award, and perks such as twice-weekly fruit deliveries.
Bermingham said: “Looking after our staff means not only helping them develop and improve their skills and careers but also their wellbeing, and that continues to be a key area of focus for us.”
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