A global company at the cutting-edge of innovation is expanding and recruiting in the North-East. PETER BARRON looks at the well-paid, quality jobs on offer at II-VI Incorporated

WORLD-CLASS opportunities are opening up in the North-East due to the rapid expansion of a company making a global impact through innovation.

II-VI Incorporated, a world-leader in supplying advanced semiconductor products, is investing heavily in the future of its Newton Aycliffe base.

And that means the business, which occupies a prominent site close to the entrance of the thriving Aycliffe Business Park, is on the lookout for new talent in a wide range of roles.

“II-VI celebrated its 50th anniversary of global innovation last year and there has never been a more exciting time to join our team at Newton Aycliffe,” says Ian Croston, general manager of the County Durham plant.

“We are expanding rapidly, scaling up our operation, and that means we have some important roles to fill – not just to support manufacturing but across the wider business function.

“The expansion of the Newton Aycliffe site represents a massive vote of confidence by the company, so our aim is to find the best talent around and to make them part of the growing success story here in County Durham.”

II-VI (pronounced two-six) is recruiting in areas such as semiconductors, wafer fabrication, and assembly, with a particular need for Product and Equipment Engineers, Technicians, Operators, and support staff in Information Technology, Human Resources, and Environment, Health and Safety.

Experience in the semiconductor sector is clearly desirable but, with on-the-job training available, the company is interested in hearing from people from all kinds of manufacturing and engineering backgrounds.

Increasing diversity is a major initiative across the whole company, so Mr Croston is keen to receive applications from women, and all ethnic groups.

And, with Europe’s biggest Army base just a few miles down the road at Catterick Garrison, he has also identified the “huge potential” for attracting former military personnel who have settled in the area.

“People who have served their country in the forces receive great training in disciplines such as engineering and logistics and we want to hear from them too because they have a lot to offer,” he says.

As part of the historic investment at Newton Aycliffe, II-VI is proud of the package being offered to employees, with Mr Croston saying: “We can confidently say we offer ‘best in class’ compensation and benefits, as well as very competitive salaries.”

The company, which has its headquarters in Pennsylvania, is holding a series of career fairs to shine the spotlight on the opportunities on offer.

“The career events we held in November and December proved to be very successful, and we are thrilled with the calibre of people we have been able to attract, both at engineering level and operator level,” said Mr Croston.

“The publicity we have received as a result of the expansion has clearly helped, and word of mouth has also proved to be very effective, with a growing awareness of the quality of the opportunities on offer.

“The Government restrictions that were introduced due to the Omicron variant obviously interrupted things to some extent, but we are ready to resume the process and recruit the rest of the team.”

As a result, two additional career fairs are now being staged at Hardwick Hall Hotel, near Sedgefield, to help complete the recruitment process. The first event is on February 10, from 10am to 4pm, and the second is on February 24, from 2pm to 8pm. Candidates are asked to bring their CVs and be ready to participate in interviews.

The recruitment drive was launched after the company announced an investment in its compound semiconductor technology platform in the UK to sustain long-term growth and secure its global position as market leader.

The company supplies opto-electronic devices to leading global players in the aerospace, automotive, and consumer electronics industries.

Mr Croston was brought in as general manager last year and brings a wealth of experience in innovation, product development and manufacturing. His career began with GEC-Marconi, developing new optical devices for use in the embryonic opto-electronics industry. He went on to work for HID Global, a manufacturer of secure identity products, based in Austin, Texas. He also spent two years with Johnson Matthey at Billingham before joining II-VI and, despite all he has achieved, is excited about the future.

“It was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down,” he says. “I love the scale of the challenge here because it’s based on a new platform that will be unique to our customers around the globe.

“Newton Aycliffe is also a great place to work. It is in a prime location, with outstanding transport links to road, rail and air and is on the edge of glorious countryside, with the Durham Dales, the Yorkshire Dales, and the North Yorkshire Moors a short drive away.”

Ian Croston is delighted to have made the move to II-VI. If you are talented, passionate about making a difference through innovation, and looking to develop a career with a world-class company, he would like you to join him.


  • To register for the careers fair on February 10 CLICK HERE
  • To register for the careers fair on February 24 CLICK HERE
  • To find out more about opportunities with II-VI Incorporated, visit  TwoSix.com/jobs