A university is giving Cumbrian firms the chance to take part in a programme to boost their businesses.

Lancaster University's Productivity through People programme is designed to enhance employee engagement, help companies embrace modern working practices and improve productivity.

The next 10-month programme, which starts at the end of October, will bring leaders of manufacturing and engineering SMEs from across the North West together with BAE Systems, Siemens and Rolls-Royce.

The programme is run in conjunction with Be the Business - an independent organisation designed to boost UK productivity - and supported by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership and Northwest Aerospace Alliance.

Helen Wilkinson, Productivity through People programme director at Lancaster University Management School, said: “Our programme features masterclasses with industry and academic experts, mentoring and company visits with a group of like-minded businesses to share challenges and ideas. When combined, it provides an ideal platform for SMEs to develop new ways of thinking and operating.

“More than 90 per cent of the SMEs who have been on the programme have said it has made a major impact on their business and growth productivity.

"It has also given the individuals the confidence to drive change within the business.”

The latest Productivity through People programme starts on Tuesday, October 29.

For more information about the programme, email ptp@lancaster.ac.uk, call 01524 593583 or visit www.lancaster.ac.uk/lums/ptp