Premier EDA Solutions Ltd. has been accredited with Investment in Young People because of its exceptional contribution to helping young people gain employability skills. Mark Prisk MP (Hertford and Stortford), presented the accolade.

Premier is a small business in Stanstead Abbotts that supplies specialist software used by electronics engineers for the internal design of electronic products. Over its 22-year history, recruiting young people and providing career advancement options is very much part of the company’s growth. Philip Mayo, managing director, in 2011 took a leap and launched a youth development programme for young people to access from outside his organisation.

Interest was high and the company now works with several Hertfordshire secondary schools. The programme aims to introduce students to the careers available in the UK electronics industry and to the skills that are required. It provides careers guidance, sponsorship and project-led work experience placements. This initiative extends to electronics undergraduates as well as sponsoring a number of university electronics labs. Premier is a WorldSkills UK sponsor and trains electronics apprentices for competing in the WorldSkills UK finals. Philip Mayo serves on various Industrial Advisory Groups and delivers careers lectures and mock interviews to students at several UK educational establishments.

Mark Prisk MP says: “The industry desperately needs more people to come into the Electronics sector. Premier’s scheme is a really good way to draw young people in and explain both the excitement of the work but also the career opportunities. They can suddenly realise that this is a path and as a career, has a lot of open opportunities and is well-paid.”

Although relatively in its infancy, the programme can claim to have influenced 300 young people’s career decisions so far. This is already starting to show positive results. Some of these young people have gone on to study engineering at university, secured industrial placements and even apprenticeship at one leading engineering company.

Premier’s founder and managing director, Philip Mayo says: “Having our youth development efforts recognised in this way is an achievement for us. We’re proud that even as a small company, we can incorporate supporting young people into our day-to-day business. The Investment in Young People accreditation will help build upon this further.”