07 July 2005 | Anusha Bradley
Three months after MG Rover's collapse, more than half of its buyers have found new jobs.
Martin Lewis, former senior buyer at Rover, said 18 of the company's 36 former production buyers have found new jobs. Six have secured permanent positions and 11 have fixed-term contracts.
However, only two of the 18 have left the automotive industry.
Lewis said the fact that only two buyers had moved to positions outside the car industry highlighted the issue of transferring skills. and a reluctance to move into less lucrative sectors.
"It has started a debate about the transfer of skills," he said. "People say they are [transferable], but when it came down to it, most have stayed in automotive.
"A lot of buyers have had offers from outside the industry, but the public sector and some other industries do not pay as well."
He added that many buyers had been at Rover for a long time and there was "some nervousness" about going elsewhere.
"A number have gone to suppliers, including myself," he said.
Lewis, now based in Scotland, was recently appointed a senior buyer for automotive electronics manufacturer Methode.
The MG Rover Task Force, set up to oversee the response to the collapse, said about a quarter of employees - 1,250 - were in work.