New Chair appointed

Steve Burley, Director of Derry Building Services, has been appointed Chair of The Electrotechnical Skills Partnership (TESP).

Burley will work with TESP’s Core and Industry Partners to develop and deliver the partnership’s strategy and policy and will provide an employer voice on the board of Core Partners. He succeeds TESP’s inaugural Chair, Diane Johnson, who has stepped down after two years in the role.

Speaking on behalf of the partnership, ECA Director of Employment and Skills Alex Meikle said: “Steve has supported our industry’s skills needs for many years through his work on the ECA’s Education and Training Committee and his time as TESP’s Vice Chair. I’m delighted he has agreed to become our new Chair and that he will continue to provide a crucial employer perspective on the challenges our industry faces – something that will be invaluable as we shape our plans for the future.”

Meikle continued: “I’d like to thank Diane for her efforts on our behalf in the first two years of TESP’s life. Her energy and passion for skills in our industry has been a huge asset to TESP and I am confident that Steve will build on the foundations she has laid as we look to plan for our third year and for the longer term.”

Steve Burley said: “With the economic upturn taking root and the industry facing a skills shortage, TESP has a crucial role to play supporting employers and the industry, ensuring that our skills needs are met and that the contribution we make to Britain’s buildings and economy is recognised. I’m delighted to become its Chair and look forward to working with the organisation’s Core and Industry partners to build on the great work that has been done to date to support our industry and the people within it.”



First candidates complete TESP Career Progression Programme

Luke Versfeld and Reece Kirk are the first candidates to complete TESP’s Career Progression Programme

They completed the programme through JTL’s Mature Candidate Scheme – a prior learning programme approved by the Joint Industry Board (JIB) which is offered through City and Guilds 2356-99 Level 3 in Electrotechnical Services for the Experienced Worker or EAL Level 3 Diploma in Electrotechnical Services Experienced Worker Assessment Route.

Luke Versfeld said: “Thank you for this opportunity to complete the ‘TESP programme’. This represents an opportunity to further develop my career as an electrical engineer and I would recommend this course to any potential candidates looking to advance their careers within the electrical industry.”

TESP Vice-Chair Steve Burley said: “Congratulations to both Luke and Reece for being the first to finish our programme. Like the rest of the engineering industry, our sector faces a growing skills shortage. This initiative aims to help address this issue and increase the amount of skilled workers in this industry by giving people like Luke and Reece, who have the ability and the experience to work as an electrician, the opportunity to qualify to the industry standard.”

To mark their success, Luke and Reece have received an ECS Gold Card in recognition of the fact they have met the industry standard, a year’s free individual membership of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), and a cash completion bonus. The first 1,000 candidates who complete TESP’s programme will be eligible for this completion package, which has been made possible as a result of donations from the ECA Stothers Fund, Electrical Safety First, NET, the IET, the JIB, and the JIB Further Education Fund.

Click here to learn more about the TESP Career Progression Programme


TESP Partner welcomes apprentice funding announcement

Steve Brawley, Chief Executive of the Joint Industry Board (JIB) and a founding partner of The Electrotechnical Skills Partnership (TESP), has welcomed Government proposals to set funding for the new electrotechnical apprenticeship standard at £18,000.

He said: “The proposed funding band allocated to our apprenticeship is a fair one, and one that reflects the recommendations and modifications made by the Trailblazer group who reviewed our previous apprenticeship framework. It shows that the Government recognises and respects the level of investment our apprenticeship needs and their continued willingness to support high-quality apprenticeships and employers in industries that need specialist skills.

Brawley also welcomed proposals to waive the co-investment in apprentice training for firms with 50 employees or less who take on 16-18 year-old apprentices. He said: “This proposal will significantly lighten the load on the small and micro businesses in our industry who typically take on and train the majority of apprentices. These firms make a significant investment in apprenticeships and apprentices, and plans to excuse them from co-funding their apprentices’ training costs, however small, may encourage more businesses to make that investment.”

He concluded: “The lack of clarity around funding has made some employers unwilling to take on apprentices until they were aware what was going on. Now the uncertainty around funding has ended, I would hope employers in our industry will recruit apprentices with the enthusiasm they have historically – an enthusiasm that saw many continue to train throughout the worst recession in living memory because of their commitment to developing the industry’s future skillsbase.”