Gordon & MacPhail encourages people to consider manufacturing apprenticeships
Gordon & MacPhail is encouraging people to consider a career in manufacturing as they celebrate the success of their first Modern Apprenticeship scheme in Operations.
Six apprentices signed up back in January 2022 to complete the training development programme while working in a variety of posts in the bottling and warehousing parts of the business.
And the first group have now successfully completed their apprenticeships and achieved qualifications recognised throughout the industry.
Now the company is encouraging others to consider a modern apprenticeship in manufacturing.
Becky Pearce, Head of Human Resources at Gordon & MacPhail, commented: “Working in the whisky sector is fascinating and it offers a whole range of opportunities. And a Modern Apprenticeship isn’t just for those starting out in their career. Some of our recent Modern Apprenticeship Graduates had been working with us for ten years and this was an opportunity to learn new skills and progress within the company.
“Like many other businesses we are facing a shortage of staff and there are fewer people entering the industry, yet the food and drink sector is an exciting one that includes many different roles from visitor experiences to marketing and finance. There are great opportunities here and a real chance to progress in your career.”
In order to deliver the Operations Modern Apprenticeships, the company had to create a bespoke training framework which ensures the combination of on the job training and specially tailored programmes would lead to an industry recognised qualification.
Modern Apprenticeships offer opportunities for people of all ages and skills to develop their career.
Martin Forsyth originally joined the business in 2016 as a Bottling Line Operator, moving to working in our Warehouse Team where he focussed his MA on distribution skills. He’s now delighted to have secured a new secondment, saying “The Modern Apprenticeship has helped me improve my skills and made it possible for me to progress within the team. The others in the team have been great and really helped me complete the MA.”
For others, the move into the whisky sector is much more recent and offered a chance to start a whole new career. Eldon Geddes joined after a career in the RAF and offshore and he explained his reason for completing the MA: “It’s helped me gain the knowledge I need to progress within the whisky industry and I now have my sights set on completing the next level qualification.”
For Jackie Shiels, her graduation as a modern apprentice has coincided with her 10-year anniversary with Gordon & MacPhail. She’s worked in a variety of roles within the company and has most recently been working on the bottling line as a process technician, or a “fixer” as she likes to describe it: “Gordon & MacPhail is a great company to work for and I’ve had the chance to take on all sorts of different roles so was happy to have the chance to gain even more knowledge and skills.”
Becky Pearce added: “Martin’s achievements showcase the opportunities available to people within the manufacturing industry and Jackie shows there is always the chance to try new things and develop your career within the industry.
“One of our main objectives is to create jobs which offer career progression at a manageable pace. Our modern apprenticeship scheme is designed to help create a high calibre workforce and continue to build Gordon & MacPhail’s reputation as a desirable place to work.”
Gordon & MacPhail has more than 70 different roles in different functions from Retail, Visitor Experiences, Marketing, Finance, IT to procurement, Warehousing and Distillation.
Working with Polaris Training, colleagues followed three different pathways: Spirit Operations Level 3, Level 2 Food & Drink Operation: Production & Processing Skills & Level 2 Food & Drink Operation: Distribution Skills.