UK aerospace challenges and opportunities


The first of two presentations to acumen7 was from Nicholas Goss of GKN Aerospace, who has risen from Apprentice Engineer seven years ago to Lead Project Engineer today. Nick gave a fascinating insight into the UK’s aerospace challenges and opportunities, covering Covid-19, the supply chain, sustainability, innovation and an aging workforce. Nick also explained GKN’s involvement in the Government’s UK Ventilator Challenge, the importance of STE(A)M in education – Art has been added, with creativity a vital part of the process, and the CTO Challenge, a design competition to encourage innovation.

Nick’s presentation was followed by overviews from acumen7 members Robert Williams, Giles Price and Donnie MacNicol, who explored how different businesses are responding to the current crisis. Robert noted things will be different for most in future, with changes including accelerated digital transformation, and greater focus on health and safety, employee mental health and organisational connectivity. Giles gave an overview of Aecom’s response globally, including producing a 100-page document to help employees understand if they are ready and able to get back to work. Donnie spoke about how cultural and organisational alignment has changed over the last couple of months, and how the level of resilience in companies has been exposed.

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