Business success and this country’s prosperity go hand in hand. Successful businesses invest more and create more jobs, directly and indirectly, which boost the economy. That’s why successful countries like ours must invent and make things. The more inventive and innovative we are, the more successful UK PLC will become.
Jaguar Land Rover has achieved successful and sustainable business growth over recent years by focusing on efficient products, sustainable manufacturing and suppliers and social responsibility. As a responsible vehicle manufacturer we have continued our relentless efforts to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in the vehicles we produce and in the way we operate.
We are now in a period of profitability, strong sales and growing customer satisfaction. This business success has had a positive impact on the UK in many ways.
The car industry is a very high-tech sector – we make the most technically complex of all consumer products. We will prosper by innovating faster and listening to our customers. Businesses that lead in developing responsible technologies will be the businesses that win. This is a good example of environmental and financial success dovetailing perfectly.
Manufacturing investment in innovation supports the development of UK technology, high-value jobs and boosts productivity of the UK as a whole. We have invested billions of pounds in the design and development of new products and state-of-art manufacturing facilities in this country. This year, we’re investing £3.5 billion in the research and development of new products and state-of-art manufacturing facilities.
Investing in talented people is crucial to the sustainable growth of our business. We have recruited 11,000 people over the past 3 years and are currently recruiting at our Solihull and Wolverhampton plants. Embedding sustainability into our business plan and fostering a passion for ‘Environmental Innovation’ amongst our 30,000 employees has helped us achieve business success.
Business success in turn means we can invest our time and resources supporting our local communities. For example last year, 6,000 employees donated more than 21,000 hours on team community projects, supporting schools, charities and community organisations local to our sites. We won Business in the Community Responsible Business of the Year 2013, the UK’s top CSR award, in recognition of our investment in UK jobs and facilities, improving the environmental performance of our vehicles and manufacturing operations and increasing skills and education opportunities for employees and young people.
Our ‘Inspiring Tomorrow’s Engineers’ school education programme has engaged more than 2 million young people across the UK over the past decade, some of whom now work at Jaguar Land Rover. We have recruited more than 1,200 graduates and 600 apprentices over the past three years alone and offer many training and development opportunities to existing employees to help them achieve their potential.
Last year, we launched our ‘Inspiring Tomorrow’s Workforce’ traineeship programme to address the huge social and economic issues of youth unemployment and we’ll be launching a new programme targeting people who have left the military later this year. We work with our recruitment agency Manpower to support various programmes for unemployed young people interested in pursuing automotive careers and have taken on more than 500 young people since 2012.
50% of our car components come from UK suppliers and support 190,000 jobs at our suppliers and in the wider economy. Our success benefits local economies in the Midlands and Merseyside, where approximately 50% of our UK total materials budget is spent. The growth of our business in the UK has encouraged local investment with suppliers investing in manufacturing, R&D and job creation.
We sell vehicles in 172 markets globally with 80% of production exported from the UK. This generates £11 billion revenue in export markets which supports UK balance of trade and export-led recovery. In all these ways, Jaguar Land Rover adds real value to the UK economy which benefits everyone.
Mike Wright was appointed to the new position of Executive Director, Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) in December 2010, reporting to CEO — Dr Ralf Speth. The role was created to focus on the development of corporate strategies to deliver the company’s growth ambitions. His responsibilities include leadership of Group Strategy; Global Financial Services; worldwide Government Affairs; Corporate & Social Responsibility and the new Special Operations division.