“ SMEs and Start-ups have gone from wondering what’s available to help them, to becoming very enthusiastic about the bright future that potentially lies ahead.
I’ve worked with the SEDA team in phase 1 and now in phase 2. It’s been very helpful in that SEDA has been able to complete in-depth needs analyses, not just about the company’s immediate plans but where they see their futures. In my opinion, it takes genuine people to get senior level managers and directors to open up to that extent, which is a testament to the personalities you’ve recruited. By the time I’ve picked up your referral and visited the employer, they already trust the SEDA team, which makes them easier to open up and talk to me about specific training needs. Mantra Learning can then discover those specific training and development needs and help them so much quicker. It’s also obvious that the SEDA team has provided a diverse range of advice as Global Auctioneers told me about opportunities with funding for reductions in carbon footprints, economical lighting, business mentoring, advertising opportunities and the cost-benefit of training including apprenticeships that were all mentioned as part of the visit with the SEDA team.
Through the SEDA team, Mantra Learning has been introduced to companies we wouldn’t have encountered previously, partly because these companies had no idea what opportunities were available to them. And I imagine, like the SEDA team, we have built some very strong relationships and empowered the companies to ask about opportunities without feeling uncomfortable about it, thus generating new opportunities for us. Not forgetting, these companies will pass details on to others. This will generate business and a stronger Greater Manchester for us all, not least the companies themselves.
Relating this specifically to Global Auctioneers, who launched in January 2019, to now employ 18 people, 2 of which are apprentices put in place by Mantra Learning through the Traineeship scheme. We continue to recruit and put in place 2 more warehouse trainees who will progress to apprenticeships. Global Auctioneers want to recruit and train young apprentices as part of their career development program as they want these apprentices to become their team leaders and managers of the future.
From this relationship Mantra Learning has identified 2 other opportunities that strengthen the local community and GM. One is that Global Auctioneers needed a warehouse manager. We supported this recruitment process through our pre-employment Job Gym program and Global have now employed a person from the local community who has the experience and aptitude necessary. The other is that we have arranged a Workplace Safari with Global Auctioneers in conjunction with Manchester Communications Academy (MCA). After identifying that Global has a real sense of community spirit and a desire to help as many young people as possible, I arranged a meeting between their MD and one of MCAs Deputy Heads. The meeting was very successful and the Workplace Safari is scheduled for July this year.
So in summary, taking Global Auctioneers as an example, this fledgling company has had many worries alleviated after meeting the SEDA team from the impartial and knowledgeable advice she provided, from cost saving through the reduction of carbon footprints, to business mentoring to training needs. They are now confident of their future, have increased their employee count to 18, including 2 apprentices but soon to be 4, employed a formerly unemployed warehouse manager and are giving more back to the GM community by hosting a Workplace Safari for a local school, packed full of have-a-go activities. If this is a typical result of the intervention of the SEDA team, may it long continue.”