Spring water and soft drinks manufacturer Radnor Hills says they wouldn’t be where they are today without its army of apprentices.
Winner of Made in Wales’ Sustainable/ Ethical Manufacturer of the year award, the business saw a 20% increase in growth last year and has recently invested in a UK £3.5 million investment in a canning line to produce canned spring water.
Working alongside Cambrian Training and Hereford College, Radnor Hills offers apprenticeships in most sectors of its business including management, manufacturing, food safety, and electrical and mechanical engineering.
Finding the right staff
Dave Pope, General Manager at the Knighton-based site, said:
“We currently have 53 apprentices which we plan to increase to more than 60 by January 2020.
“Apprenticeships really help us as a business to keep developing with the times, as we can continually make sure our staff are learning the most up to date techniques to move the business forward.
“The apprenticeships we offer encourage people to stay working with us for longer, as it gives them constant opportunities to develop and gain more qualifications. If people do ever want to move on, we’re really proud that we’ve equipped our staff with the right qualifications and transferrable skills they need to get ahead.”
Choosing apprenticeship success
One apprentice who has benefitted from the apprenticeship programme is Ben Price. Ben achieved ISO14001 accreditation for the company’s effective environmental management system which has opened new sales opportunities. Ben said:
“Since I started my apprenticeship in September 2018, I’ve been able to get involved in so many areas of the business and have worked my way up from the factory floor to Environmental Co-ordinator.
“I’m now working towards my Management Level 5 apprenticeship, and I’m really looking forward to managing my own team in future. I feel like my apprenticeship will make me a more well-rounded manager, as I’ve worked my way up and have a real understanding of what the new apprentices will be dealing with and the challenges they’ll face.”