Award-winning Chesterfield engineering company Thermotex is starting a trend . . .
It has now plucked three recruits from the world of fashion.
The 23-year-old company custom-designs thermal sleeves and jackets which are relied on for temperature control by companies around the globe - from oil and gas refineries in the Arctic Circle to UK chocolate factories and an offshore wind farm at Hornsea
Each item has to fit perfectly, and Thermotex bosses have found that people from the world of Planet Fashion are a seamless fit for their hi-tech manufacturing process.
Rebecca Stacey joined Thermotex two years ago as head of design after a career creating menswear with a bespoke tailor in Leeds.
Her skills have proved so valuable, her team has now expanded with the arrival, of Megan Williams fresh from gaining a degree in fashion design from the University of Westminster,.
Now a design engineer at the Broom Business Park Megan, 24, from Sheffield, said: “Working at Thermotex is not where I thought I’d be straight after university, but the opportunity drew me in.
“My degree helped me cultivate a fascination for functional utilitywear, which has fed nicely into my work at Thermotex.
“Being able to pattern-cut has been useful too, although there’s a huge difference between pencil and paper patterns and designing them directly on a computer to be cut out on an industrial machine.
“The end result is very different too - in a good way. Our products can help save vast amounts of energy, so I feel proud that I’m contributing something that can actually make a difference.”
Megan has found the manufacturing industry has another benefit over the fashion industry; the hours are regular and there’s an emphasis on work-life balance.
New purchasing lead Kira Button also has a fashion degree -in textile design.
“After graduating from Falmouth University I expected to work in a weaving mill, producing and designing cloth for fashion and interiors companies,” said Kira, 23.
“But my textiles skills are a good fit at Thermotex, especially within purchasing, which I learned on my degree course.”
A third new recruit is a further example of the company’s ‘out of the box’ approach to recruiting.
New project administrator Kimberley Harvey, 21, has a degree in Theoretical Physics from Leeds University.
She said: “Thermotex is a great place to start my career. Much of what we do is science-based.
“I am currently involved in finding innovative ways to create connections within our software to improve the speed and quality of our procedures and services and I hope to get more involved in the technical side of the products.”
Managing director Chloe Watmore said: “We are a fast-growing company and are innovative in everything we do. When it comes to recruiting we think out of the box.
“Our recruits bring a new dimension and strong skills to our workforce.
“Who says we should only recruit from the worlds of engineering or manufacturing? People can’t imagine how the skills from the fashion industry can transfer to our sector. We are proving otherwise.
“Everything we design for our clients has a crucial purpose and has to fit like a glove so it can do its job properly in the most difficult conditions across the world.
“We look for people who love to deliver toexacting standards and have a keen eye for detail.”