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2021 IOP Apprentice Award

Lewis Liston of Leonardo UK for outstanding contribution and achievement in his apprenticeship journey and continued career development within industrial engineering, supporting Leonardo UK through varied and complex simulations and data analysis of production systems.

Lewis Liston was an outstanding apprentice in Leonardo UK’s apprenticeship programme. From when he joined in 2016, he received excellent feedback from his mentors throughout placement rotations, with most rating his performance as either outstanding, minimal supervision necessary or exceeding expectations for an apprentice.

Liston achieved an A grade in his HNC Engineering Systems qualification, and successfully achieved his apprenticeship in August 2020. He is now an industrial engineer.

Liston learned how to use the SIMUL8 program to create multiple capacity models for advanced targeting projects, quickly becoming the functional expert. He used the models as a powerful tool to manage Leonardo UK’s capacity, resource, facility and forecast at a sector level.

This functionality was especially useful during the pandemic lockdown, when the company was able to use the models to plan output with limited resource available on site. Liston provided support throughout the lockdown period so that the company was able to run scenarios for the management/planning teams and provide any other data that would help them maximise output.

He introduced first-time yield as a new way for the company to create models, which was adopted across the sector with far less cost (estimated 80% reduction) and time (two weeks less per model) involved in each iteration.

The models created by Liston successfully identified how many units could be manufactured and how much resource and facility would be required to achieve different levels of output. It also showed areas of risk and how they might affect output so they could be averted.

Following the presentation of his findings to the vice-president of advanced targeting, the model indicated that further sales could be achieved, allowing the build plan for that year to be amended.

Liston continues to use these models in his current role, to answer questions relating to capacity planning, process improvements, resource/facility requirements, output and problem areas.

He works alongside the manufacturing project manager to understand where investment is required to achieve optimal output levels.

With mentoring from Leonardo UK’s experienced technicians, Liston learned how to bond optics. He was then able to use this skill to support the manufacturing hall when they required new operators to be trained.

Gaining new skills in video editing using Adobe Premiere Elements, Liston created training videos that detailed manufacturing processes for sub-assemblies. These were used as a helpful aid for new apprentices joining the function. He also supported the manufacturing awareness sessions for first-year apprentices.