ATEC – Looking forward to 2019

2018 has been another successful year for ATEC. It has been a busy time during which we have laid the foundations for further developments through 2019.

The importance of Quality Standards

Evidence-based quality standards are critical to ATEC. Our customers rely on us to ensure the highest service levels in supporting mission-sensitive equipment and components. During 2018 we have added several new accreditations to our portfolio:

ISO14001: With an increasing focus on environmental issues, we were pleased to secure accreditation to ISO14001 – the environmental standard. This demonstrates our ongoing commitment to ensuring we deliver effective services which have a minimum impact on our environment and surroundings.

OHSAS18001: The highest standards of health and safety are also central to the ATEC mission. We secured accreditation to OHSAS 18001 during 2018 and have a transitional audit scheduled for next July to enable the transfer of our accreditation to the new ISO45001 Occupational Health & Safety standard.

AS9100D: Since 1997, AS9100 has established itself as the most widely adopted and standardised quality management system for the aerospace industry. ATEC has worked to AS9100 for many years and during 2018, we refreshed our certification to Revision D. This is the latest version which fully incorporates the ISO 9001:2015 quality standards while, at the same time, adding clauses relating to product safety and the elimination of counterfeit components.

DAOS: The Design Approved Organization Scheme provides an independent assessment of the competence of defence contractors and service organisations such as ATEC who are involved in the design of aircraft systems and associated equipment. The scheme has been adopted by Boeing UK and we are pleased to have recently passed the rigorous scheme audit. We look forward to full certification early in the New Year.

The value of investment

The investment across the ATEC site which was started in 2017, has continued across the past year. As well as completing the shop-floor re-layout, we have raised awareness across our site by adopting the IASME (Information Assurance for SMEs) Consortium ‘Cyber Essentials’ programme.

Cyber Essentials aims to help organisations such as ATEC implement fundamental levels of protection against cyber attack. ATEC takes cyber-security seriously.

We have also implemented the 5s Process Control methodology at our Wardley site.

New customers

Although the basis of ATEC’s long-term success is established and continuing relationships with our customers, it is also important that we are regularly adding new customers and projects.

Here are 2 key additions from the past year. Rockford Components Ltd is the UK’s largest independent provider of wiring, interconnect and system solutions to the defence, aerospace, and industrial sectors. Meanwhile, in our overseas markets, a major new contract with the Indian Navy will see ATEC supporting fuel control systems and test sets for Gnome engines for some time to come.

Looking ahead to 2019

ATEC plans for 2019 are already well in hand. We are looking forward to a major rebrand for the business coupled with a new and updated website.

With the growing influence of Industry 4.0, we plan to bring in several new initiatives including:

  • 3D Printing
  • Visualisation Project – improving workflow, capacity and introducing a paperless shop floor
  • Automated process for the management of PPE and CosHH
  • DAOS Certification to access work with Boeing UK in relation to the upgraded T55 engine on Chinook helicopters

Staff Development

ATEC staff are core to our operation and we need to ensure we can both recruit, and retain the best. To this end, we have strong engagement with the apprenticeships programme and we are committed to close partnerships with education.

We have a number of new employee initiatives scheduled for 2019 which tie in with our wider mission – particularly in relation to the environment. Planned additions to the ATEC Employee Benefits Package include:

  • Electric Charging Points for staff vehicles
  • A Cycle to Work Scheme to encourage staff to swap from 4 wheels to 2, getting healthier at the same time!
  • A Salary Sacrifice Car Scheme

New Business Development

Our business development focus is increasingly on partnerships.

Strategic partnerships with our customers deliver a win:win formula that we are keen to expand. During the coming year, we plan to explore new business opportunities by developing existing relationships and opening up new contacts with key companies.

All in all, exciting times for ATEC.