Engineering firms urged to sign up for free innovation and business support

Engineering firms urged to sign up for free innovation and business support
September, 2014
South West College is calling for ambitious engineering firms to sign up to a free programme aimed at accelerating innovation and business growth.

A panel of industry leaders, including Nick Rakkar from Siemens Industry Software, will discuss the opportunities available through the InnovateUs Programme at an advice seminar in Dungannon on Friday 17th October.

Funded by the Department for Employment and Learning, InnovateUs provides Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) with innovation expertise and a wide range of specialist support services to ensure they have the skills needed to seize new opportunities and improve productivity and competitiveness.

Launched in 2011, the three-year programme is delivered across Northern Ireland by all six regional colleges and has already enabled businesses to create and sustain jobs, boost skillsets and improve growth prospects.

Speaking ahead of the event, Dr Jill Cush Innovation & Development Manager, at the South West College InnoTech Centre, said the programme offered a wealth of opportunities for smart-thinking firms keen to act quickly:

“The InnovateUS Programme puts expertise and resources within the reach of small businesses and creates a more level playing field where nimble firms can compete and win against larger operators. Engineering has a strong heritage in Mid-Ulster and is a valuable asset for the regional economy. It is vital that even the smallest firms have the opportunity to access professional business support and capitalise on innovative ideas to enhance their future competitiveness.”

Tyrone-based MCD Engineering Ltd, signed up for the InnovateUs Programme in 2013 to find a solution that would help reconcile 3D design information and make it easier to analyse and identify potential obstacles. Oliver Mc Elduff, MCD Engineering, said:

“The response developed by South West College, which included a bespoke and comprehensive training course, has both improved our quantitative analysis of assembly designs and part components, and our ability to tender for new work. MCD has since received further CAD training through InnovateUs to bring new products to the market and we plans to build on our experiences in the programme.”

The seminar takes place at 12pm at the South West College in Dungannon. The event is free, but numbers are limited and attendance should be registered in advance by contacting Emma McGirr, InnoTech Centre Co-ordinator, on 028 822 55223; or