Many of the challenges facing today’s energy industry have been written about at length – the impact of Brexit, technical changes and an ageing workforce coupled with a growing skills gap. However, these challenges can also provide exciting opportunities not just in the obvious areas of engineering and IT but also in other functional activities in the sector. It is questionable whether the energy industry reflects this excitement in its image.
As a consultancy and recruitment business operating as a supplier of niche services we have specific concerns and difficulties in overcoming the image of the energy sector. This is not helped by a clear lack of energy policy which prompts headlines such as “when the lights go out” on a regular basis and the current fiasco concerning the installation of smart meters.
Investment could be made to raise awareness of the many opportunities, long term benefits, personal development programmes, remuneration, career control potential and other advantages that working in the gas industry could bring.
Some years ago, Wilcock led a campaign to attract meter workers from the Peugeot plant in Ryton, Coventry which had announced total closure of the plant. We were successful in recruiting personnel to fill all the vacancies we had at the time. Furthermore, these former car workers proved to be above average in technical capability and reliability.
In a recent survey, one of our long-term clients, DNV GL, has identified an industry belief that gas has a long-term attractiveness as an energy source in meeting future, lower carbon targets. We need to be taking advantage of the opportunity.