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New fast-track leadership programme for SME manufacturers

Applications are now open for a new leadership training programme launched by manufacturing initiative Made Smarter, which aims to help SMEs accelerate their digital transformation.

The Leading Digital Transformation programme is designed to turn participants into digitally-informed, empowered leaders armed with a bespoke ‘digitalisation strategy’.

The course, developed by Made Smarter and Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU), will be delivered through a blend of face-to-face workshops, online webinars, case studies and site visits to smart factories where participants will see tech in action.

Registration is now open, with the programme beginning on 30 March 2023.

Made Smarter said leaders will walk away from the programme with a set of practical tools and their own strategy for digital transformation, as well as access to further support including funding for new technology.

Ruth Hailwood, Made Smarter’s Organisation and Workforce Development Specialist Advisor, explained:

“This programme focuses on strategy and how to identify critical priorities for taking a business forward, as well as highlighting where digital tools can help. It examines the business from the top floor to the shop floor, capturing real perspectives about their readiness for digital transformation.

“It has been designed to be flexible for manufacturing leaders to fit around their busy schedules, allowing them to take time out of their business to reflect on the bigger picture and share ideas, experiences and opportunities with their peers in manufacturing.”

Mandy Parkinson, Director of Centre for Enterprise at MMU, added:

“MMU is delighted to collaborate with Made Smarter on this new leadership programme which will provide fast, focused support to business leaders at such a critical time. Since 2015, we have supported more than 2,000 SMEs in areas including growth, innovation and resilience and we are looking forward to seeing the difference our range of expertise will make to more businesses across the region.”

The programme is available by application to SME manufacturers with a significant part of their operations based in the North West.


For Greater Manchester manufacturers unsure of how to prepare for the exciting opportunities presented by digitalisation, our Manufacturing Service is an ideal stepping-stone. Speak to one of our specialist advisors today to learn more.

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