Published On: Thu, Mar 21st, 2019

Mackenzie Glass invests for the future with apprenticeships programme

Mackenzie Glass’ has recruited three new apprentices to its team as it builds for the future as part of plans for long term growth. Set up as an independent glass merchanting business with the acquisition of Pilkington’s Bristol operation from NSG at the end of 2017, Mackenzie Glass has committed to a major infrastructure investment programme.  This has been underpinned by corresponding investment in its team, with the recruitment of seven new colleagues, including the creation of three new apprenticeships. 

Mark Herbert, Joint Managing Director Mackenzie Glass, said: “Apprenticeships are a key element in the development of our customer offer. There’s an incredible knowledge and expertise within the business and we are committed to making sure that that is shared with a new generation of colleagues, as we build a depth of expertise within our business for the long term.”

Mackenzie Glass’ three new apprentice recruits are Samantha Tucker, who joins the customer support team and is completing an apprenticeship in business administration; and Jay Richards and Kyle Preece who join as apprentice glass operatives, specialising in glass processing and distribution, respectively. 

Partnering with Bristol College and Exeter College, the three new recruits are going through a combination of on the job training and formal assessment as part of the newly created Mackenzie Glass Apprenticeships journey. 

This includes working alongside colleagues who are already highly skilled in their role as they learn about each unit against their qualification on the job. They are then assessed against course criteria to make sure that they’re hitting expected milestones and the competencies, or to identify if additional training or support is needed.

“We’ve set ourselves a target that 10% of our workforce should be apprentices or former apprentices”, said Mark. “Matt Prowse, [Joint Managing Director, Mackenzie Glass] and I are both former apprentices and the grounding that it gives you is invaluable. 

“With recruitment of skilled people a continuing challenge, apprenticeships have a critical part to play in developing and passing on skills, to secure not only our long term future but that of the industry as a whole.” 

Mackenzie Glass supplies more than 300 tonnes of glass each month. This includes a comprehensive range of products from Pilkington as its first Pilkington Regional Partner, plus as an independent merchant, other float glass suppliers including Saint Gobain, Guardian and AGC.

Its’ investment programme since acquisition has included the expansion of its delivery fleet; new IT integration; fire saw; vertical washer; and Bottero 515LAMe laminated glass cutting table. 

“We’re committed to delivering a better and more flexible service to our customers. We’re doing it through investment in machinery, people and our product offer”, said Mark. 

He concluded: “We’re developing an exceptionally strong team, we have more flexibility within our infrastructure and we’re developing our offer to include a broader range of products, which we see as offering an opportunity to add value and for our customers to add margin.”