A group of women have taken part in an initiative designed to tackle the gender bias in the automotive industry.
Men outnumber women in almost all occupations in the industry. Women make up the majority of workers only in administrative and secretarial roles, accounting for 70% of workers.
Six women took part in a challenge designed to encourage females to consider more technical roles within the industry.
At an event run by Southgate College, in partnership with the IMI and supported by automotive paint suppliers the Morelli Group, the women from different employment sectors took part in a paint spraying course which was designed to highlight the skills required to work in an automotive bodyshop.
Some of the tasks undertaken included; masking techniques, polishing and paint formulation and mixing.
One of the female trainees was Alivia Paver who currently works as a business development manager for the Stoneacre Group.
Paver said: “I am sure many of us are ignorant of the dedication to detail and the skill that is required to produce the end result.
"Talent in this area is often overlooked, but I can understand why those that carry out this role have so much job satisfaction, and pride in their work.”
Andrew Moring, marketing director for the Morelli Group, said: "In over 20 years of working for Morelli Group I have only seen a handful of female productives, a more male dominated trade would be hard to find yet there is no real reason why women should not be able to do the job as has been proven today by the ladies taking part in this challenge.”
The IMI promotes the 'Women and Work' funding programme.
The scheme encourages employers in England to take advantage of funding towards the cost of developing the skills of women in our industry.
To find out more about the Women & Work initiative or to arrange for an IMI representative to visit, please contact Nicola Hayes at the IMI on 01992 511521 or email firstname.lastname@example.org