Having opened its doors to apprentices in July of this year, the fork lift industry’s first dedicated training centre – F-TEC – chose IMHX for its public launch and was “astonished” at the response.
Quickly establishing itself as a focal point of the Future Skills Zone, F-TEC attracted a constant flow of visitors representing manufacturers and dealerships from across the industry.
“We were delighted by the level of interest and the quality of the enquiries, including blue-chip companies,” explains Karl Baum, Managing Director of F-TEC. "There was a great deal of interest in the apprentice programme from companies of all sizes who wanted to discuss the practicalities of taking on a trainee and from others who wanted more information and dates for the engineers courses. One major player has asked us to design a bespoke training programme for all its engineers.
“It was also great to hear a large number of extremely positive comments from companies pointed in our direction by the FLTA and BITA. They just wanted to congratulate us on establishing the industry’s first dedicated training centre, something that many felt was long overdue.
“We also hosted a visit from the Mayor of Solihull, who was very interested in the programmes we are offering.”
One of the highlights of the week in the Future Skills Presentation Theatre was the BIG Fork Lift Truck Quiz, hosted by F-TEC, which saw Linde and Toyota Materials Handling apprentices going head-to-head answering 20 questions each against the clock. Both teams showed outstanding knowledge and professionalism, and after a close contest, Team Linde won by five points. Fittingly, the prize was presented by David Rowell who in his time as President of BITA played a pivotal role in the formation of the new centre.
“Attending IMHX was a success in every possible sense,” concludes Baum. “It gave us the perfect opportunity to showcase what we are doing – and how we are doing it – whilst allowing those of us working for F-TEC to see many client companies and a vast array of new equipment that will ultimately require engineers’ courses."