Borders-based firm invests in future

ONE of the UK’s leading sawmilling firms, BSW Timber, has launched a graduate management training programme to support young people into senior positions within the company.

BSW, which has its headquarters in Earlston, operates six sawmills in the UK and one in Latvia, and employs 900 people.

The two-year scheme has been designed to coach and prepare graduates for positions such as production supervisors, production managers and even mill managers.

Simon Brooks, who graduated from the University of Sheffield with a BSc in biochemistry and microbiology in 2009, and Jonathon Fry, who graduated from the National School of Forestry with an MSc in forest ecosystem management in March 2012, are the first to benefit from the scheme.

The pair will be based at different BSW sawmills throughout the UK, learning about the day-to-day management of the operations and the importance of quality standards.

They will attend leadership training courses alongside other supervisors and managers from the BSW group, giving them the opportunity to meet others and share their ideas for the business.

Barry Carruthers, group training manager for BSW, said: “It’s the knowledge and expertise of the people behind the business that make BSW Timber what it is today, and we’re committed to investing in promising business talent.

“We welcome Simon and Jonathon on board to further their careers within BSW, and look forward to continuing the scheme for graduates in the future.”

Mr Brooks said: “The BSW Timber management training programme presents an excellent opportunity for me to implement the knowledge and skills I gained in formal education whilst continuing to learn the ropes of management.

“Combining work and training will no doubt be beneficial, as I seek to apply new skills and learn from those already in the management team.”

Across all its UK sites, BSW Timber now produces almost a third of the entire nation’s sawn softwood output following its multi-million pound investment in modern manufacturing sites.