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25 February 2022

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs): a Beneficial Boost for Businesses


All companies, regardless of size and current trajectory want to improve their chances of success. Fresh pairs of eyes and a new perspective can really help, and Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs) are the perfect programme to do just that.  

For a Government-funded programme that’s been running for over 45 years, KTPs deserve greater recognition. Cardiff Metropolitan University has an impressive track record of successful KTPs and is keen to develop more in partnership with organisations ambitious for growth.

How does a KTP work?

KTPs are three-way strategic projects. They are individually designed to meet a business need and improve competitiveness, by drawing upon academic knowledge and expertise, whilst utilising motivated, talented graduates to implement the project.

Projects can be from one to three years long, but typically last two years. Full, easily-accessible project support directs you through the process – from early-stage discussion, to bid creation and submission to guidance across the lifetime of a funded partnership.

Talented graduates steer the project with the supervision of both business and academic supervisors. Recently, Verity Moorhouse, an Associate from a current KTP with Sevenoaks Modular won a 2021 Future Leaders Award – one of eight UK-wide Future Leader accolades. This highly prestigious award demonstrated the quality of the project she worked on, her abilities and the invaluable input from the supervisory academic team within Cardiff Metropolitan University’s School of Art & Design.

 Delighted partners

Speaking about KTPs, Dr John Littlewood, the Academic Lead on the three-year KTP with Sevenoaks Modular, said:

“KTPs are hugely beneficial for all parties involved, responding to industry challenges, and collectively delivering positive outcomes. On this KTP, company turnover has increased by several million pounds, with greater market share in Wales and England.

“The academic benefits for me have included co-authoring two book chapters, one of which was presented at the 2020 Sustainability in Energy Building international conference, collating evidence for an impact case study and enhanced teaching materials for lectures with students at all levels. Beyond the project scope, we have collaborated with Sevenoaks Modular on a follow-on UK grant application for ‘Sustainable Manufacturing’, submitted in 2021.”

Sevenoaks Modular has refined its manufacturing processes for timber-frame wall, floor and roof systems, reducing material and labour wastage, therefore making vital embodied carbon and cost savings for the company.

Company Director of Sevenoaks Modular, Charlotte Hale, said:

“We cannot thank Verity Moorhouse enough for what she has done with injecting innovation throughout our company. It’s most definitely embedded a culture of continuous improvement and innovation that will continue to flourish within our company.”

Another recently completed KTP with Cardiff Met was with P&A Fencing and Sheds Limited (T/A Zest for Leisure). The business is investing in a new design and innovation centre following successful embedding via the KTP of end-user, focused new product development and the KTP has directly led to the creation of three new full-time positions within the company.

Andrew Baker, Financial Director, commented:

“The KTP has been massively beneficial for the company. The knowledge gained from the University on the design process has proved to be invaluable to us. By embedding the principles and processes of the KTP, I have real confidence that we can drive the market for softwood garden products”.

 Keen to explore how your company could benefit like this?

Let’s talk. Experienced academics are keen to explore collaborations with you. The great news is that projects are affordable for both SMEs (approx. £27k per year) and large companies (approx. £40k per year) so all the benefits highlighted are within reach. Please note, all projects are costed separately so these figures are guidance but are realistic.

Getting discussions underway is advisable as it does take a while to get all the pieces in place and the quality of the bid as good as it needs to be. If your organisation has a strategic need that you do not have the in-house knowledge and expertise to address it – KTP could be the answer.

Let’s get the conversation going – contact Joanne Hill, Bid Development Officer at Cardiff Metropolitan University on jehill@cardiffmet.ac.uk.

 



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