A market size of £7bn and employing over 10,000 people in the UK*, the precision engineering sector plays a small, yet valuable part, in the wider context of the UK economy and its standing on the global business stage.
With a rocky manufacturing environment in the UK caused by the coronavirus pandemic, with UK car production recording a year-on-year decline of 99.7% in April 2020, and a further year-on-year decline of 95.4% in May 2020 according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Yet in other sectors signs the signs in the precision engineering sector are positive, with re-geared operations towards the production of medical equipment during the height of the outbreak having a positive impact on their businesses.
The future is bright for precision engineering companies
We know too well here at Kirkstall precision Engineering about the power that re-geared operations can mean, having played our part in delivering ventilators to the NHS. But as our focus now turns to our core sectors and customers return with orders, we are now getting a sense of why the future is bright for precision engineering in the UK.
Talking about this, our Operations Director Iqbal Bahia commented that: “There is a real sense of positivity out there amongst customers. We expected this from the medical sector, but are pleased to see that in sectors such as oil and gas, automotive and food manufacturing the orders are coming in thick and fast and there’s certainly no sign from our European clients about any adverse effect of the Brexit deal”.
Breaking into new sectors
This positive situation has been felt with Kirkstall breaking into some new industry sectors. Speaking about this, our Managing Director, Adam Thornton, added: “The production, maintenance and refurbishment of bespoke equipment and machinery to specific instructions for a wildly diverse sectors has always been a strong point here at Kirkstall, you can’t get any more different than creating hip replacements for surgeons and components for oil and gas production , but what has been encouraging recently is how we have been approached by new sectors such as safety critical and food, due to out approvals for the medical sector
These new sectors have seen Kirkstall Precision Engineering have a strong start to the year and with recent investments in skilled people, new processes and new machinery, the sure footing that the business is on has meant handling these new challenges has been easy.
Focussed on the right areas for success
Part of Kirkstall’s ability to thrive at the moment has been delivered because of a strong strategic vision. From looking at key industry trends and emerging sectors to identifying threats and opportunities as well as moving quickly on opportunities or advancements to make our offering more competitive, a strong leadership team has meant we are proactive in shaping our offering and making us appealing to a wide range of customers.
That’s why we feel the future is bright for this industry in the UK. The signs are positive and there are clients looking for a wide range of precision engineering solutions, now that the long slumber that Covid has brought with it has begun to disappear.