Software solves recruitment riddle

Written by: Tim Fryer | Published:
The headline partners – Bloodhound, DAX Sports Cars and Land Rover BAR – provide the pulling power for the LNx project

One notable area of common ground amongst engineers, their customers, suppliers and the education system is the CAD environment they all operate within. There are realistically only a handful of these that have widespread acceptance and one of these is the Siemens PLM suite of software.

Majenta PLM is Siemens leading value added reseller in the UK and it has used its contacts throughout the engineering spectrum to weave together a community that can provide advantages to all parties.

The result is LNx (short for Links) and is best viewed as a triangle with the corner positions being filled by partnerships, education and placements.

Partnerships are three standout projects where Siemens (supported by Majenta) has been the core design environment. They are DAX sports cars, the Land Rover BAR (Ben Ainslie Racing) team that is striving to win the next America’s Cup yatch race, and the Bloodhound Project that aims to break the land speed record.

Education covers the increasing penetration that Majenta PLM wants to achieve within higher education. Other software suppliers have blazed this trail before – Solidworks have been the most successful – but until now Siemens Solid Edge and NX have not had widespread use within academia.

And this leads on to placements, where the Majenta LNx aim to help its business customers get in touch with talented young engineers.

As head of Majenta’s Education, Partnerships and Placements, Ash Curzon was a natural choice to manage the new LNx division.

Curzon admitted: “I suppose some of the reason [for launching LNx] is that 75% of our commercial customers struggle to find talented graduates.”

‘Talented graduates’ in this context would include a working knowledge of Siemens PLM software as one of their talents. To ensure that this is an increasing pool, Majenta is putting more emphasis on what it has to offer universities.

Of the 128 British universities, Majenta currently has around 15 as its academic customers, but one of the targets of LNx is to grow that substantially. Referring to the Solidworks stronghold in this domain, Curzon observed: “There is nothing wrong with a dual CAD approach. If there are areas in other CAD software where they don’t excel, maybe we do excel in those areas. And from a commercial perspective they equally need to see other benefits, which is why the LNx division is offering more than just software.”

Five new universities have signed up to the LNx package for the new academic year, and Curzon aims to add a further 15 for the start of the 2016 intake. This package is not just selling a discounted licence; it includes a support programme that was devised for higher education use by the Universities of Ulster and Edinburgh in conjunction with Siemens PLM and Majenta. And support itself is not just for the software, but can include completely non-software related issues presented through workshops and seminars.

“I get to demonstrate [to the students] right from the get-go that there is a wealth of opportunities out there,” said Curzon. “If you are a graduate from a top university with a first class degree you will probably be looking at either automotive with JLR or Aston Martin, or pro-design with someone like Dyson or maybe marine with Sunseeker. But some people for whatever reason miss the boat and what I am trying to achieve, rather than let them drift off into something else like banking and finance, is show them that there are some really exciting well paid jobs in SME companies that you would never have heard of.”

And, it works both ways. Gaining knowledge of the graduate pool, allied with extensive customer knowledge, puts Majenta in the ideal role to be a recruitment agency, and this has become part of LNx division’s remit.

Recruitment services

LNx will offer a range of recruitment services, ranging from filling a single vacancy to providing a full recruitment strategy. If the company – a Majenta PLM customer - is looking for that single employee, LNx will source that individual for a fee related to the starting salary, in much the same way as an ordinary recruitment agency would work. But there is one big difference, as Curzon explains: “An agency would not normally include specific training, whereas what we are saying is that it is rubber-stamped, that this graduate can definitely use the Siemens PLM software.”

What is more is that the fees are approximately half of the industry norm of 20 – 30% of salary.

Working with students also gives Curzon and his team the advantage of finding out what appeals to the younger generation and how to reach out to them, information that LNx can pass on to those SMEs who struggle to attract top graduates.

Curzon commented: “They should be attending the employment fairs that are run at the beginning of every year, bringing some of their coolest, most innovative products and an engineer that they have recently taken on, or a graduate that you have recently been involved with because that allows them to see the journey. They also need to be making more noise in more appropriate areas like social media. Don’t use the standard recruitment methods, maybe instead of having a telephone interview have a Skype interview, get them in groups for assessment days and that sort of thing. So, it is bringing out a graduate attraction procedure, for want of a better expression. This is particularly valuable to SMEs because they get to then keep the information and the procedures that have been given to them, and they can use that for the rest of their graduate, or any form of attraction, campaign moving forward.

“I don’t want to go down the traditional route of advertising a job, getting 100 applications and then filtering through them. I want to go and work on a much more bespoke – and I hate this expression – but ‘boutique’ way of doing it. So you tell me what you need and I go and find it for you.”

Conclusion

Recruitment is of course only one strand to the LNx objectives, and is the aspect of most direct use to Eureka readers. It is interesting to see how the project develops, with a software supplier using its penetration into the education system and the pulling power of high-profile projects to provide value to the engineering sector.

Majenta PLM to give workshop at Engineering Design Show

Majenta PLM will be hosting a workshop at this year’s Engineering Design Show on 22nd October in Workshop Theatre 2 at 14.15 entitled, ‘The Best Kept Secret in CAD’.This seminar will outline productivity benefits that can be achieved from combining history-tree based modelling and direct modelling. They will also discuss the modern methods of licensing CAD software and how accessible it can be to the wider audience.



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