Corporate member Whitemeadow Furniture has launched a new online Careers Hub as part of a drive to to address the skills gap in the upholstery industry.
The Careers Hub is aimed at educating and attracting young people and those wanting a career change into the industry and to give an insight into the various roles available within the upholstery trade, both production and head office based. The Hub provides hints and tips for kick-starting careers as well as some behind-the-scenes insights into roles and people at Whitemeadow.
Whitemeadow is proud to support several initiatives, both industry-wide and as an employer, to encourage more people into the upholstery industry. From sponsoring School Design Prizes in local schools to offering year-long placements to Product Design university students, Whitemeadow is committed to developing talent at all ages.
The company will partner with various organisations moving forward to promote the Careers Hub and for the month of May they are partnering with a local career advice service and digital magazine that aims to inform, inspire, and support young people in making decisions about what to do when they leave school.
The Hub will also evolve over time to include added functionality such as being able to ask specific questions directly to relevant members of the team.
Managing director Ian Oscroft said: “We’ve got a great team here that we are extremely proud of. We employ over 650 people at present but are still needing a range of people to fill various roles, especially upholsterers and sewing machinists. This has been an exceptionally challenging 12-month period, but it has encouraged us to focus our attention on ensuring that we are employing and retaining high quality members of staff who are proud to work for the company and who are passionate about what they do. The Careers Hub is a further demonstration of our commitment to not only fill the skills gap in our industry but to ensure that we have a workforce that believes in our vision and values so that we can continue to be a leading supplier to our many valued customers.”
Whitemeadow launched its Sewing School in 2019 and has now successfully trained 18 full time sewing machinists who now all work in their production sites. It is a rolling program entering its fourth phase of apprentices and the company are now looking for the next set of recruits. Following the success of the Sewing School, Whitemeadow are also launching its first Upholstery School later in 2021. Both schools will be based at their new Langham Park site in South Normanton, Derbyshire. Those who complete either course leave with a Modern Upholsterer Level 2 qualification and the offer of a full-time permanent role with the company.