Author Archive F-TEC

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F-TEC Reopen Practical Training with Linde Support

Linde Material Handling UK are supporting training provider F-TEC by opening up sites for practical assessments for all intermediate and final year apprentices.

Throughout lockdown F-TEC have been continuing to support their apprentice delegates. With the training centre closed all training has been delivered via webinars and online learning. In addition, delegates have been regularly contacted to ensure they have been coping, not only with their studies, but also with potential feelings of isolation. F-TEC have ensured the apprentices’ studies have continued uninterrupted, progressing them towards qualification.

However, for the apprenticeships to be completed, it is still necessary for practical evaluations to take place. This has obviously not been possible over the last few months and despite a gradual relaxation of restrictions, holding workshops has still not been a possibility. The usual venues for these assessments are still closed to the public and therefore training.

Fortunately, F-TEC are delighted to be receiving the support of Linde Material Handling, who have offered to host these sessions at a selection of their locations in the UK. These are geographically placed to enable delegates from up and down the country to attend. The venues will be set-up to observe all social distancing measures and health and safety requirements as dictated by the current Government COVID-Secure guidelines.

As the industry leaders in the UK, Linde Material Handling have been supporting F-TEC for a number of years and even more so over the last few months. Despite the difficulties faced during this time Linde Material Handling have continued to work closely with F-TEC to ensure their apprentices were not disadvantaged by lockdown.

Jeremy Caddick, Senior Director Aftersales at Linde Material Handling, says, “We are delighted to be in a position to support F-TEC and apprentices across the UK in providing venues to host their practical assessments. The geographic spread of our UK sales and service centres means we are able to provide local assessment locations reducing apprentice travel and minimising the number of delegates in each location to allow for effective social distancing. We have always had an excellent relationship with F-TEC as the only recognised training provider for our industry. We have been particularly impressed with the support they have shown our learners during these times – particularly the pastoral care as well as academic support. They are fulfilling a key role in the closure of a widening skills shortage in our industry, so we are as eager as they are to ensure not only our own apprentices, but all apprentices in our industry, receive the practical training required for their studies.”

Karl Baum, F-TEC adds, “Knowing that we needed easily accessible venues for the apprentices, mitigating risk to them, we approached Linde Material Handling as they have supported us throughout the pandemic. We are so grateful that they have offered to open their doors to us, as it would have been very disappointing to have to postpone the practical element of the apprentices training with no indication of when this could be restarted. This has been a difficult time for many of our learners, and with Linde Material Handling’s support we can now offer them the opportunity to reconnect with their peers and complete their programmes.”

National Forklift Safety Day poster

National Forklift Safety Day

It’s #NationalForkliftSafetyDay! This year BITA are focussing on pedestrian impact. Find out more about this year’s theme of ‘Separation Saves Lives’ at

#FTEC #NFSD #NationalForkliftSafetyDay #BITA #HealthAndSafety #SafeForkliftTraining

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What’s the most frequently asked question in the forklift truck industry? “Where can we get qualified engineers?”

The skills shortage in this area is one that we should all be concerned about. Without new qualified engineers entering the field, the fate of intra-logistics in the UK is at risk. With such reliance on intra-logistics across industries including retail and manufacturing, the risk to the UK economy, as a whole, is a very real one as demand outstrips availability.

For individual companies who supply forklift trucks, the more imminent risk is that the lack of available engineers results in failure to deliver on agreed maintenance contracts.

This issue has been known for many years and is getting increasingly difficult as the current pool of engineers approach retirement. Complacency and a lack of awareness by businesses mean the time to act is now. With the onset of Brexit and proposed changes to the movement of people within Europe, this skills gap will no longer be able to be filled by other nations.

F-TEC and the FLTA are addressing this by promoting the Up-Skilling Course: IMI – Lift Truck Maintenance & Repair Qualification Level 3. This programme provides the essential knowledge and competence for service technicians working on a range of forklift trucks. The programme is suitable for someone who has experience with machines as an engineer, a knowledge of operating principals of combustion engines and/or a knowledge of operating principals of electric vehicles.

The training is delivered over 6 months and includes 5 x 1-week training blocks at our dedicated Forklift Truck training centre based in Swindon. The training is supported by E-Portfolio, a distance learning programme which has been specifically designed to support candidates throughout their journey to attain their level three qualification.

There are a number of benefits to enrolling your staff on this course. It is designed and taught by industry experts ensuring the training delivered is relevant and easily applied back in the workplace. The course not only appeals to those currently working in the forklift truck industry but also other engineers from industries such as automotive, locomotive and parts.

Training is a recognised motivator for staff and up-skilling your team shows you are investing in them personally and will increase their loyalty. This is particularly relevant in an industry with such a small pool of qualified engineers who often move companies to the highest bidder. As well as keeping your staff happy, this course will also improve customer relations as the rates for first time fix will increase, reducing customer downtime.

F-TEC fully support the trainees throughout the course and offer access to additional expertise post-course. The pass rate for this course is exceptionally high at 94-98% success making your investment worthwhile.

The future is in your hands, fix the skills shortage now! Sign your engineers up to the F-TEC Up-Skilling Course via the FLTA website.

F-Tec keep forklift engineers working during lockdown

Keep Learning in Lockdown

With educational establishments closed during this pandemic, learning for all ages has had to adapt to remote and home teaching. The importance of continuing education to the under 18s is clear but adult training and development is also vital during this period and the lockdown offers a unique opportunity for many to develop new skills, rediscover old ones or fine tune existing ones.

Under normal circumstances many businesses struggle to find the time to train their staff so for those who are working from home or reduced shift patterns, now is a perfect opportunity to offer them training. Whilst these are challenging times, engaging in personal development is a great distraction and helps keep the mind active so when the lockdown is lifted the transition back to ‘normal’ will be easier.

F-TEC is still open for business and courses can be booked for those wishing to develop their staff in the future. As an industry many workers are not in a position to work from home and have continued to support their businesses during this difficult time. One way to show appreciation is to offer them training, leading to a recognised qualification. Training is a well-known motivator for staff and up-skilling your team shows you are investing in them personally and rewarding their loyalty.

F-TEC is continuing to support its learners with access to resources and advice ensuring they do not slip behind with their training. Some courses, including the IMI Level 3 Up-Skilling course, are being taught remotely until onsite and practical training resumes. Support goes beyond the classroom though, with the F-TEC team offering apprentices and learners emotional support in what are difficult times for many of them personally. F-TEC believe it is vital to keep in touch with their learners, not just about their courses, at a time when many of them are feeling isolated from their workplaces.

For more information on training and support call: (01793) 686182.

Forklift trucks in workshop

F-TEC Sponsors Top Industry Award

The Forklift Training Engineering Centre (F-TEC), has announced its sponsorship of The Safety Award at the prestigious Awards for Excellence 2020.

The Awards for Excellence is the biggest annual event in the materials handling industry calendar bar none. The FLTA Awards will be returning to the Hilton Metropole at the NEC Birmingham on Saturday 21 March 2020.

F-TEC is a dedicated training facility, offering 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: “We are delighted to sponsor the Safety Award. It has perfect synergy with the business, our ethics and what we stand for. We’ll be there on the evening to present the winner with their award.”

The evening will also play host to F-TEC’s Level 4 graduation ceremony.

Karl continued, “Our Level 4 engineers will be in the spotlight on the evening as the awards ceremony will see them graduate. This is a prestigious moment as some of the biggest names in the industry will be present. Graduating as a Level 4 engineer is a monumental achievement and is something to be celebrated.” 

Tim Waples, chief executive of the Fork Lift Truck Association, said: “We’re thrilled to have F-TEC support and sponsor The Safety Award. F-TEC is a highly regarded company in our sector and we are delighted that they have added their weight and status to what is recognised as the longest-established and most authoritative awards in the materials handling industry.”

The Safety Award shines the spotlight on those companies working to make our industry a much safer place. This year’s Finalists have gone to tremendous efforts to ensure that, at the end of the shift, everyone goes home safely.

F-TEC will join an elite group of sponsors and supporters that already reads like a who’s who of the industry, including Carrylift, Combilift, Doosan Industrial Vehicle UK, IBCS, Flexi, Toyota Material Handling, Triathlon Batteries, TVH and Yale Europe Materials Handling.

A joint initiative of the forklift industry’s leading trade associations, BITA (British Industrial Truck Association), and the FLTA, the training centre was created to address the training needs of the forklift truck 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.

The Awards for Excellence was launched to encourage and reward examples of excellence throughout the forklift truck industry and beyond, the Awards and gala dinner has a truly international appeal with sponsors and winners flying in from Europe and the Far East for the Oscars-style ceremony.

The Awards ceremony is the one evening in the year when all of the UK’s major forklift truck players come together in one place for a night of fine dining, live music, dancing and networking, and of course, to find out which companies and individuals have triumphed in the eagerly-awaited awards ceremony itself.

Karl continued, “We wish all finalists the best of luck and we look forward to celebrating with them in March.”

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, visit

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Photo of Ellie Shaw, business admin apprentice

F-TEC practice what they preach with new apprentice

18-year-old Ellie Shaw has been taken on as an apprentice by the Forklift Training Engineering Centre (F-TEC).

F-TEC is a dedicated training facility, offering an extensive range of engineering programmes, including; apprenticeships, advanced level courses, thorough examination, diagnostics, safety, and more.

Ellie is enrolled on the Level 2 Business Admin apprenticeship at New College, based in Swindon.

Karl Baum, managing director of F-TEC, said “Through F-TEC, we promote apprenticeships and train them up to be industry ready. It’s a fantastic way to recruit new members of staff and grow your business and now we are following the same lead with taking on an apprentice for the admin team.”

Ellie’s main focus will be on customer service.

Ellie said, “I wanted to do an apprenticeship because you cannot go into a business administration role without experience. I wanted to gain experience and also a qualification to increase the possibility of being able to do this role in the future.”

Ellie found out about F-TEC through the government apprenticeship website. She goes on to say, “I did not know a lot about the company, so I researched it. I chose F-TEC because I found out that it was a great place to be, with a family environment and they take care of the apprentices and help in any way they can. The staff are also really nice, and I couldn’t have hoped for better people to be working with.

“This apprenticeship means a lot to me as I had applied for a lot of apprenticeships previously but was unsuccessful because I did not have any experience. The fact that F-TEC have given me the opportunity to do this makes me really happy and proud to be part of such a great team. It also allows for me to develop my skills in this area and to learn how to do business admin properly.”

The training centre was created to address the training needs of the forklift truck 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.

Ellie said, “I hope that this will lead me to a full-time business admin job in the future as it is something I have a passion for and have always wanted to do, hopefully it will be at F-TEC. So far, I have learnt a lot and will keep learning as much as I can and will try my hardest. I am really enjoying my time at F-TEC.”

To find out more about F-TEC, visit

F-Tec classroom on Open Day


F-TEC opened its doors on Wednesday 22 January 2020, revealing what makes it a top training centre in the UK.

Industry leaders from the powered access sector explored F-TEC’s 15,000 sq ft centre, containing four fully equipped training rooms and two large diagnostic workshops.

This space allows F-TEC to deliver fully integrated training to the material handling and powered access industry.

A presentation was provided, covering training, apprenticeships, funding and recruitment, giving visitors more confidence in the services that F-TEC offers.

F-TEC offers an extensive range of powered access and forklift programmes, including: apprenticeships, advanced level courses, thorough examination, diagnostics, safety, and more.

Visitors enjoyed a day consisting of informal networking with industry leaders, industry insights, a buffet lunch and much more.

Karl Baum, Managing Director of F-TEC, said “We’re one of the best-kept secrets within the industry and were delighted to open our doors to allow people to find out what we’re all about. Some of our apprentices were also available to talk about their personal journey.”

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.

F-TEC delivers 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.

Staff member explaining forklift safety to visitors

Alcohol Interlocks deliver reduced risk for material handling incidents and accidents

Alcohol has no place in the workplace especially if you are responsible for material handling equipment and vehicles. Forklift trucks are widely used throughout industry for moving materials and goods, but they also feature prominently in worksite accidents: every year there are about 8,000 lift truck accidents, some of which are fatal, according to an article entitled ‘Driving lift trucks’ which is available on the TUC  website (

A positive step towards safer operation of these vehicles is being tested and trialled for industry adoption at The Forklift Training Engineering Centre (F-TEC), which is based in Swindon (

F-TEC is a joint-venture of the forklift industry’s leading trade associations, BITA (British Industrial Truck Association), and the FLTA (Fork Lift Truck Association). The training centre was created to address the training needs of the forklift truck industry.

Karl Baum, managing director of F-TEC said, “F-TEC are trialling the use of a Lion DS-25RS, breath alcohol Interlock. This is a hugely important to F-TEC as we continue to develop and work in synergy with new and emerging technology applications such as these.” 

The Lion DS-25RS was designed, developed and manufactured by Lion Laboratories Ltd ( Lion are world-renowned experts in alcohol in breath analysis and are the pioneers and introducers of the world’s first electrochemical breathalyser.

The Lion DS-25RS breath alcohol Interlock is an ignition interlock device or breath alcohol ignition interlock device (IID or BAIID). It is a breathalyser for use on a wide range of vehicles. In order to use it, the driver has to blow into the mouthpiece fitted on the DS-25RS device before starting or continuing to operate the forklift truck. If the resultant breath-alcohol concentration analysed result is greater than the programmed blood alcohol concentration, then the device prevents the vehicle from being started, as it is directly connected to the forklift trucks ignition system.

The DS-25RS Interlock interrupts the signal from the ignition to the starter until a valid breath sample is provided so declaring the driver / operator fit to operate the forklift.

The trial is being managed by RpM-i who is an authorised distributor for Lion Laboratories for alcohol Interlock detection and safety systems who have a specific focus on the material handling industry. RpM-i is working with F-TEC and Lion in raising the awareness of alcohol in the workplace and improving the safety – duty of care – corporate responsibility and liability within the warehousing, logistics and material handling industry.

This is a positive step forward for safety in the warehousing and logistics workplace and it is likely that once adopted you will see many of these instruments fitted to aerial platforms (cherry pickers), off-road construction vehicles, cranes and many other vehicles that we encounter in the workplace.

It is anticipated that as a result of this initiative by F-TEC, a UK and Ireland network of installers will support the warehousing, logistics and material handling industry. These installers would be trained to the manufacturer’s standards either by F-TEC or the manufacturer.

Top UK training facility, F-TEC choose redheadPR to make an impact

Wiltshire-based redheadPR, the dynamic independent public relations consultancy, has confirmed a long-term campaign with Forklift Training Engineering Centre (F-TEC), the dedicated training facility. 

“We’re delighted to be working with F-TEC. They have a huge UK and European presence. They’ve worked with some of the leading manufacturers in the industry and over 40 independent companies.” said Sara Tye, founder and managing director of redheadPR.

F-TEC is the only training facility in the country that is accredited by both the British Industrial Truck Association and the Forklift Truck Association.

There is little question as to why the training company selected redheadPR as the agency to firmly establish their national presence.

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.

“Working with redheadPR has already bolstered our profile. In the short time we’ve worked together, we’re planning our biggest ever presence at IMHX (the UK’s largest event for logistics and supply chain professionals) in September. We’ve also received a visit from a local MP, celebrated our third year in business, received credible coverage within the sector and increased our digital profile.” said Karl Baum, managing director, F-TEC.

“A continued PR campaign is integral to our marketing and sales process awareness, and profile raising for organisations like F-TEC. We have lots of exciting announcements on the horizon and look forward to working with Karl and his team.” said Sara.

Having celebrated 15 years in business, redheadPR also has client experience with many leading brands in the engineering and manufacturing sector including Jet Environmental, Keter, MediSieve and many other organisations.

redheadPR helps clients build a platform from which they can voice their expertise, engage in conversations and deepen relationships with existing and potential customers. Content strategy, publishing, application and social media integration lie at the core of its strategies.

Graham Hughes


Parts supplier TVH maintained its high visibility at IMHX with its busy hospitality area well supplied with Belgian beer.

On the serious side, TVH UK key accounts manager Graham Hughes said the company was highlighting its MyTotalSource webshop, an online tool to help find any of the company’s 40 million parts.

The company debuted its GemOne telematics offering which “keeps an eye on machine maintenance and usage”, while it also showed its battery reconditioning system. “There is still a lot of prejudice about battery regeneration, so we’re showing how we can give you another two or three years of battery life.”

A separate stand hosted a wide range of TVH’s CAM attachments line.

Hughes was particularly proud of TVH’s association with the F-TEC training initiative and the company supported the trainer’s stand by bringing a hydraulics training simulator to the show. “It allows people to build a hydraulic circuit to see how it works without actually having to take a fork truck to bits,” he explained.

TVH is well advanced in changes to deal with Brexit and its approach will be reported in a future newsletter.

The above article first appeared on the website.