The selection of the National Manufacturing Competitiveness Levels (NMCL) programme, which will deliver the government’s national supplier competitiveness and productivity improvement initiative, has been announced by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). Designed to improve competitiveness, raise workforce capacity and increase productivity of UK manufacturers, NMCL will be boosting the nation’s exports and economic growth.
Led and match-funded by industry, and with the backing of 25 of the UK’s largest manufacturers, NMCL has been jointly developed by the automotive and aerospace sectors for application across all areas of manufacturing.
Delivered by SMMT, NMCL Automotive is designed for the automotive sector and will make use of the £16 million of government funding to develop sustainable and internationally competitive UK supply chains. The new NMCL approach has already been successfully piloted by companies in the North West of England.
NMCL is designed to help manufacturers of all sizes and stages of development understand how competitive they currently are and develop the specific business capabilities they need to boost their performance. The programme includes an in-depth competitiveness assessment based on company capabilities and the views of key customers. This data is then applied to investment decisions across six areas of competitiveness; quality, cost, delivery, flexibility, products/technology and customer experience. Projects are tailor-made for each manufacturer and focus on boosting competitiveness, increasing ‘value-add’ and winning more orders.
“This announcement is a shot in the arm for the UK’s automotive industry in general and the supply chain in particular. NMCL is a central part of the Government’s Industrial Strategy and the sector deal for the industry, offering a proven way for business to achieve competitiveness. Coming at a time of considerable upheaval, it is important that all manufacturers are alert to the technological, market and trading changes that are occurring and take the right steps to ensure they are not just viable but globally successful in the future,” said Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive.
NMCL projects will typically last from six months for smaller initiatives to up to three years for entire business transformations. NMCL’s approach is also ideally suited to other manufacturing sectors such as rail and defence. Companies are invited to declare an initial expression of interest in participating in NMCL by completing a short form on the NMCL website.