Author Archive F-TEC

F-Tec celebrating three years in business

F-TEC Celebrates Three Years in Business

July 2019 sees the Forklift Training Engineering Centre (F-TEC), the dedicated training facility, celebrate its third year in business.

F-TEC, based in Swindon, Wiltshire, offers an extensive range of forklift engineering programmes, including; apprenticeships, advanced level courses, thorough examination, diagnostics, safety, and more.

Karl Baum, Managing Director of F-TEC said, “Since the business started three years ago, we’ve gone from strength to strength. F-TEC now boast a team of 14 who manage the apprentice and commercial training.”

Over the past three years F-TEC has trained in excess of 600 engineers, of all ages and abilities.

Justin Tomlinson MP, Minister of State at the Department for Work and Pensions, who recently visited F-TEC, said, “It’s fantastic to celebrate yet another growing and thriving business that has chosen Swindon as its base for its national programme. I’ve been particularly impressed with programme of works to train up the next generation of engineers in this vital industry.”

Working with some of the leading manufacturers in the industry and over 40 independent companies, F-TEC delivers training designed by the industry, for the industry.

Karl Baum continues, “We have a 15,000 sq ft centre which contains four fully equipped training rooms and two large diagnostic workshops, to enable our trainers to deliver fully integrated training to the Material Handling Industry.”

F-TEC deliver training to companies across the UK and Europe, from independent companies with one or two engineers to manufacturers with hundreds of engineers. They provide training to young apprentices aged 16 plus to engineers with decades of experience.

For more information on F-TEC, visit



New apprentice training on lift trucks

New apprenticeship standard agreed for lift truck and powered access technicians

In a major new development for the sector, a Level 3 Lift Truck and Powered Access Engineering Technician apprenticeship standard and end point assessment (EPA) have been approved by the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education.

The 36-month course will be recognised by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers (I/MechE), the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) and the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI).

Originally part of the Government’s Trailblazer initiative, the new standard is the result of industry-wide consultation coordinated by F-TEC — the forklift industry’s training facility — working in tandem with a steering group drawn from across the industry. Among the manufacturers, dealerships and industry bodies involved were Crown, Linde, Acclaim Handling, IPAF, BITA, FLTA, Lomax Powered Access and Briggs Equipment.

Announcing the news, F-TEC Managing Director Karl Baum said: “The training landscape is changing, and we have worked with organisations of every size from across the industry to create a modern standard that meets the needs of both employers and apprentices.

Fork lift apprentice

“It has been an extraordinary team effort and we are delighted that the new standard has been approved. We look forward to implementing it on future programmes.”

It is anticipated that the new standard will be introduced initially for those starting new apprenticeships this summer, with full enrolment expected by September.

Speaking on behalf of the Steering Group, its chairman Kevin Sowerby of Crown emphasised the scale of the achievement. “This is a hugely important development. It is the result of a great deal of hard work and the widest possible consultation in order to ensure that the standard is truly representative and meets the requirements of the whole industry.

“At this moment we have some concerns regarding funding levels but are working with the Institute for Apprenticeships & Technical Education in order to resolve them.”

For more information on the new Level 3 standard for Lift Truck and Powered Access Engineering Technicians please call 01793 686182.

F-Tec celebrating a strong performance

Dramatic growth in training within the fork truck sector

F-TEC off to a strong start in 2019

F-TEC, the forklift industry’s dedicated training centre, has revealed record-breaking figures for the first quarter of 2019.

The remarkable start to the year has seen a 50% expansion in the centre’s training capacity, double-digit growth in the number of apprentices, a dramatic increase in the number of engineers attending courses, a doubling in the number of trainers and investment by industry partners including Crown, TVH and B&B Attachments of more than £330,000 in new and refurbished equipment.

Revealing details of the first quarter performance F-TEC managing director Karl Baum explains: “When F-TEC was first established with the support of the sector’s two key trade associations, BITA (British Industrial Truck Association) and the FLTA (Fork Lift Truck Association), our mission was to give the industry the training it needs to prosper.

“To achieve that we’ve sought to work closely with all parties, from the biggest manufacturers to the smallest dealers to make certain that our courses meet the needs of individuals, employers and the wider industry. The results demonstrate we’ve succeeded in that.”

From its state-of-the-art facility in Swindon, F-TEC offers apprentice, engineer and technician development courses as well as skills-transfer programmes, advanced qualifications, Thorough Examination training and skills courses for non-engineers.

Karl continues: “We’ve designed our courses to give employers the best return on their training investment by equipping employees with the skills and understanding needed to work much more efficiently.

“Our advanced diagnostics courses, for example, equip service technicians with the capability to achieve unprecedented first-time fix rates. Our customer services courses, meanwhile, impart the know-how to handle tricky situations and build satisfaction as part of a business-retention strategy.

“Importantly, because our courses are specifically developed by the industry for the industry we work very closely with those on the front line and evolve to meet changing needs. Our growth reflects the confidence the industry has in F-TEC and demonstrates a growing recognition of what the right skillset can do for any service operation.”

To learn how F-TEC’s engineer training can help your business, visit


The next generation of engineers

On Saturday 30th March, an elite group of young engineers graduated in front of a capacity crowd at the Telford International Centre for the 25th FLTA Awards.

From the graduating class of seven, four were in attendance to collect their Level 4 Certificate in Advanced Automotive Studies for Master Technicians from television host Mark Durden-Smith.

F-TEC — the Forklift Training Engineering Centre — is an organisation closely involved with the FLTA and BITA. It offers those interested in the industry the opportunity to develop their knowledge of engineering methods using the latest, high-quality equipment at the cutting-edge facility.

The Level 4 course focuses on advanced diagnostics and is designed to align traditional methods with state-of-the-art technologies. It gives engineers a thorough understanding of vehicle systems — enabling them to diagnose problems faster and with greater certainly than using fault codes alone.

For the employer that means higher efficiency and profitability — through a far higher hit-rate for “first time fixes”.

Katherine Roberts, who represented F-TEC at the ceremony said: “This years’ graduates are among a small handful of engineers throughout the UK to achieve this certificate. They have demonstrated the advanced levels of technical knowledge, practical skills and sheer tenacity.

“Our apprentices have the talent, imagination, and dedication to progress into the industry’s most senior roles. The journey they’ve made with the guidance and support of our fantastic F-TEC trainers has been nothing short of remarkable; we couldn’t be prouder.”

To learn how F-TEC’s engineer training can help for your business, visit today.

F-TEC expand training team

The industry’s only dedicated training facility F-TEC has hired two new trainers to join their team.

As the only approved training centre for this industry, the Forklift Training Engineering Centre (F-TEC) deliver top-of-the-range training courses for engineers and non-engineers, designed specifically to meet the needs of the forklift industry.

Hosted by a team of highly-trained staff, the courses offer delegates the opportunity to train in a variety of key industry-specific skills.

This year, the number of courses at F-TEC has risen due to popular demand, so the centre has recently added two new trainers to the team.

Both have an enthusiasm for all things forklift truck, which they’ll bring to their new roles as F-TEC Technical Trainers.

Managing Director of F-TEC Karl Baum said: “With the mix of experienced engineers and new apprentices we get through our doors, finding just the right people for the training team is incredibly key.

“With the new trainers’ extensive experience of working with young adults and excellent organisational skills, we know they’ll be vital parts of the F-TEC team for years to come.”

Courses are booking up fast in 2019, so be sure to secure your place now at:

If you would like to know more about F-TEC training courses, please call 01793 686182 or email

UK first for F-TEC

Training centre receives ground-breaking hydraulic simulators

F-TEC – the forklift industry’s dedicated engineering training centre – has been provided with two state-of-the-art hydraulic simulator boards for use in its engineer courses.

Leading parts supplier and F-TEC training partner TVH has loaned the unique simulators – the only two in existence – from its training centre in Belgium. The equipment was designed and built by TVH engineer degree course students to simulate the hydraulic systems found on a forklift truck.

Each simulator consists of a main board, as well as a secondary “cassette” board with mounted components. F-TEC students will be able to use the new simulators to design, build and test their own hydraulic circuits as part of realistic simulated exercises – providing authentic and in-depth training unseen by the industry so far.

“F-TEC strives to deliver the best hydraulics training in the UK and these simulators will enable us to achieve this,” said Karl Baum, Managing Director of F-TEC. “No other training organisations have kit like this, propelling our courses to an unparalleled standard.”

The simulators will be based at F-TEC’s training centre in Swindon, Wiltshire, and will be used as part of two hydraulic courses: hydraulic diagram reading (TV010) and introduction to mobile hydraulics (TF005).

“We look forward to continuing our partnership with TVH to supply these innovative training courses that will ultimately provide apprentices with advanced skills to support their careers,” said Karl.

The cutting-edge simulators can be used to train engineers on a variety of hydraulic set-ups. They will also enable F-TEC to offer bespoke training courses for new audiences, including manufacturers.

“We are very excited to begin using these hydraulic simulators,” said Karl. “The ability to conduct practical tests and assess different scenarios will transform the way students train.”

If you would like to know more about apprenticeships or training courses, please call 01793 686182 or email

Pick of young forklift engineers graduate in style

F-Tec graduate awards

Left to right: Head Trainer F-TEC, Kevin Michel; Benjamin Feehan; Andrew Gay; Christopher Bell; Ashley King and Managing Director of F-TEC, Karl Baum.

The best of Britain’s young forklift service engineers have been honoured in a graduation ceremony hosted by the British Industrial Truck Association (BITA) in the magnificent surroundings of Hoar Cross Hall in Burton on Trent.

Four graduates attended the ceremony, representing an inaugural class of eight, all of whom achieved the advanced levels of specialist technical knowledge, understanding and practical skills to gain the Level 4 Certificate in Advanced Automotive Studies for Master Technicians – Lift Truck

The Level 4 course was developed and delivered by F-TEC – the forklift industry’s dedicated engineering training centre – in collaboration with IMI and with input from both manufacturers and dealerships within the forklift truck industry.

Presenting the Awards alongside Simon Barkworth of BITA was F-TEC Head of Training Kevin Michel. “The rewards from completing the course are great for both engineer and employer” he explained “but it is a challenging qualification as it demands high levels of competence from both student and instructor and a willingness to invest in the necessary study. I am particularly proud that every student who embarked on the course made it successfully through to graduation”.

The Level 4 course focuses on advanced diagnostics and is designed to align traditional methods with state-of-the-art technologies. It provides engineers with a far deeper understanding of vehicle systems – enabling them to diagnose problems faster and with greater certainly than using fault codes alone. For the employer that means higher efficiency and profitability – through a far higher hit-rate for “first time fixes”.

In addition to a framed certificate from T-TEC, each of the successful graduates received an added bonus: a cheque for £200 presented by Rob Fisher of Informa. “We are delighted to acknowledge their achievement” explained Fisher, “especially since training will be such a focal point at IMHX 2019 – the largest event for the UK’s logistics industry.”

Summing up, Simon Barkworth added “Alongside our partners in the FLTA, our Association has long been committed to training increasing numbers of apprentices. The introduction of a Level 4 qualification for forklift truck engineers brings us into line with the automotive industry and offers high performing young people the opportunity to advance their careers incrementally.

“The young people on stage today represent the future of our industry. They have the talent to progress into more senior roles, such as sales or technical managers. Level 4 is a vital new milestone in that process.”

To learn how F-TEC’s engineer training can help for your business, visit today.

F-TEC are recruiting!!

Are you an experienced Engineer looking for a new challenge?

Would you like to work for the only industry backed training provider?

If so, this is the vacancy for you!

Due to recent expansions F-TEC are currently recruiting a new trainer, this unique opportunity will allow you to come off the tools and train the Engineers of tomorrow. You will be providing the professional training for the industry at the only industry backed training centre located in Swindon.

This is a great opportunity for an experienced Engineer, who is willing to gain the professional training qualifications, to become an accredited training professional.

If this sounds like the opportunity for you, please call us on: 01793 686182.

F-TEC will be at IMHX 2019

F-TEC brings the focus on forklift engineer training and apprenticeships back to IMHX

Whether you’re looking to take on apprentices or becoming an apprentice, then the F-TEC stand should be your first port of call at IMHX.

And because we’re so dedicated to bringing through the new generation of engineers, we’re already planning ahead for our appearance at the 2019 event.

Karl and his team will be on hand throughout IMHX and they are hoping to meet with companies thinking about taking on an apprentice.

Taking on an apprentice is – without a doubt – an investment in the future since trained engineers are leaving the industry – largely through retirement – faster than they are being replaced.

The team will be available to discuss all aspects of taking such a step, explaining the practicalities, as well as the proven rewards that training your own can deliver, including loyalty and raised productivity.

Upskilling is the future

ThumbInspectionWith skilled fork lift engineers retiring faster than new ones are recruited there is an acute skills shortage.

Sure, you could poach someone else’s staff – but the chances are they’ll simply move on: selling their skills to the highest bidder. You could train an apprentice and, by doing so, you’ll benefit from someone who’ll be more loyal, less likely to leave and a better advocate for your business.

But what about now? How do you fill an immediate and critical hole in your operations?

Well, you could do what some smart employers are doing and work with the lift truck industry’s only accredited training centre, F-TEC to upskill promising candidates.

“In simple terms, we take a promising individual and give them a set of real-world engineering skills to a level that makes them productive profit-earners.  It could mean developing one of your own staff: a labourer, yard man, someone in the parts department perhaps” explains Karl Baum, Managing Director of F-TEC.

“Alternatively, we can upskill an individual from another industry such as transport or agriculture giving them the vital knowledge and techniques necessary to work on fork lift-specific areas such as hydraulics.

“It’s been tried before but invariably it involved pitching someone in at the deep end in the hope they’d “pick it up as they go”. At best this was a slow and haphazard process that usually ended in frustration and failure…”

By contrast, F-TEC courses provide a proven, fast-track means of giving candidates the knowledge and skills required to make them immediately productive… and profitable. Small wonder that some of the biggest names in the industry (as well as some of the smallest) have seized on this as a transformative route to solving engineer recruitment issues – in tandem with F-TEC led apprenticeship schemes.

“Because F-TEC was createdby the industryfor the industry with the backing of both BITA and the FLTA, we understand what’s really needed. We are happy to provide confidential and obligation-free guidance on all your technical training needs – including upskilling – just give me a call on 01793 686182.”

If you’d like to know more about apprenticeships, or Service Engineer Development Courses, please call 01793 686182 or email