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Manufacture a new career for yourself
Advanced Materials and Manufacturing is an exciting sector in Wales, employing over 150,000 people. For example, if you have a mobile phone you’ll probably have technology that was developed right here in Wales.
Many jobs are highly skilled and well paid. You could work on drones, space innovation, maintaining jets, communications, holograms or alternative fuels and technologies.
You could work in Aerospace and Defence, Automotives, Photonics (light particles eg fibre optics, lasers), Space, Low Carbon, Maintenance Repair and Operations and Unmanned Aircraft Systems(UAS)/Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).
Advanced materials are key to smart technologies and sustainable growth. They will be used to help develop products that don’t even exist yet.
150,000 people work in Manufacturing in Wales in over 5,000 companies. Most of these are Small Medium Enterprises (SME’s)
(Welsh Government, 2014)
Wales is one of the world leaders in alternative fuels and low carbon applications
(Welsh Government, 2016)
Manufacturing is the 3rd largest industry in North Wales and employs 27,000 people
(North Wales Economic Ambition Board, 2016)
Demand for Engineers in Wales will be high. 8,000 Engineers will be needed in Wales up to 2022
Wales needs more...
Programmers and Software Developers, Stock Control,
Business Sales Executives, Production
Managers and Directors,
Metal Working Production and Maintenance,
Electricians and Electrical Fitters,
Financial Accounts Managers, Quality Assurance Professionals,
Storage Managers and Directors,
IT and Telecoms Professionals,
Engineering Technicians, Engineering Professionals
What jobs can I do?
Some of the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing jobs you could do:
Source: Welsh Government, 2015
West Wales is home to the world’s largest dedicated airspace for testing civil and military RPAS (Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems)
(Trade and Invest Wales, 2014)
4% of people in Advanced
Materials and Manufacturing are self employed
(Welsh Government, 2015)
Nearly 60% of people are employed in
(Welsh Government, 2015)
Meet the Employers
These are some of the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing employers in Wales:
Toyota Motor Manufacturing (UK) Ltd
BA Wales Plc
Aircraft Maintenance Pontyclun
Biomet UK Ltd
Surgical Implant and Instrument Manufacture, Bridgend
Ford Motor Company
Aircraft Manufacture, Broughton, Flintshire
Control Techniques Drives Ltd
Motor Control Products Manufacture, Newtown
GE Aircraft Engineer Services Ltd
Supplier of Wafer Products to Semiconductor Industry, Cardiff
What can I earn?
Salaries can vary depending on your experience, the employer and where you live. Higher salaries can be awarded for more senior positions. Salaries also vary for self-employed workers.
Source: CASCAiD, 2016
Many jobs in Advanced Materials and Manufacturing are highly skilled such as managers, professionals and technicians. The industry needs Science, Technlogy, Engineering and Maths graduates.
Apprenticeships are a great way of getting into the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing sector. You can start at an entry level or can work towards a higher level degree as part of your apprenticeship:
- Engineering Manufacture Apprenticeship (Level 2 & 3)
- Laboratory and Science Technicians (Level 2 & 3)
- Composite Engineering (Level 2 & 3)
- Metal Processing and Allied Operations (Level 2 & 3)
- Operations and Quality Improvement (Level 3)
- Advanced Manufacturing (Level 4)
- Engineering Manufacture (Level 4)
- Advanced Manufacture (Level 6)
earn £28,992 on average compared to £21,700 for all graduates ’
employment than new graduates in general, 74% compared to 68%’
For more professional jobs within the sector, employers will look for a higher skill level so you might need a degree qualification.
There are plenty of HE courses you could do. Such as:
- BEng Aerospace Engineering or Chemical Engineering or Environmental Engineering or Materials Science and Engineering
- MEng Aerospace Engineering or Chemical Engineering or Environmental Engineering or Materials Science and Engineering
- MSc Aerospace Engineering or Nanoscience to Nanotechnology or Materials Engineering
- Engineering Doctorate
- PhD Chemical Engineering or Nanotechnology
6 masters level qualifications are being developed within the industry.
Networking and word of mouth are particularly important in the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing sector. Get to know other people and businesses, face-to-face and through social media.
Build your network of contacts to sell yourself and your ideas.
Get as much work experience as you can. Lack of general work experience is one of the top 3 reasons employers give for not employing someone.
Skills in demand
High level skills are in demand in this sector. Many production jobs have been replaced by machinery or robots. The sector needs technicians, engineers and scientists who can be flexible to respond to new devleopments.
- In depth product knowledge
- High Level ICT skills
- Commercial and technical skills
- Problem solving
“We need polymer chemists and textile technologists. We require a big crossover of skills, including chemical engineering and conventional process engineering.”
(Industrial Needs Survey MAeKES Project, 2014)
The Royal Academy of Engineering identified a need for more than 100,000 STEM graduates per year until 2020
In the future high value products will focus on taking advantage of new materials such as composites, nanotechnology, optoelectronics, printable electronics and silicon electronics.
(Welsh Government, 2015)
Do I need Welsh Language skills?
If you work in Wales, being able to speak and write in both Welsh and English can give you an advantage in the workplace, especially if you are working in a Welsh speaking area and need to communicate with people as part of your job.
In the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing sector
What about the future?
Employees in this sector need to keep their skills updated to keep up with the changes in technology.
Fastest growing Advanced Materials and Manufacturing jobs in Wales, shown in percentage of growth.
Source: Working Futures 2012-2022