ECA (Excelence in Eletrictotechnical & Engineering Services) calls on London Mayor to prioritise green electrical skills in the capital

ECA’s Chief Operating Officer Andrew Eldred has reiterated calls on London Mayor Sadiq Khan to provide small electrical contractors with extra financial and administrative support to hire apprentices for crucial low-carbon electrotechnical work.

He also called for direct funding of the Electrotechnical Experienced Worker Assessment route, as well as infrastructure to assist completion of the Assessment.

Following ECA’s contributions to the London Assembly Environment Committee’s investigation into low-carbon skills in the capital, the Committee has published an open letter to the Mayor asking that he prioritise green skills and apprenticeships as we work towards net zero carbon emissions.

Andrew Eldred told the Committee that there are particular challenges in providing opportunities for on-the-job training because of the small size of many electrotechnical and engineering services contractors.

He suggested that additional assistance for small companies would enable more to consider taking on apprenticeships, adding, “I absolutely buy into the idea of extra support for smaller employers. For the electrical apprenticeship, 80 per cent of all electrical apprentices are already employed by non-levy companies, the smaller companies.

“However,  many smaller businesses do not have the bandwidth to manage the full burden of taking on an apprentice. They are put off by bureaucracy, so additional incentives and support, including potentially wage support, could be targeted at those companies.

“If that support is provided upfront, particularly for a small outfit that is taking on its first apprentice, we could see a resolution to the issue.”

The ability to upskill our existing workforce is also crucial in meeting skyrocketing demand for low-carbon installations. The open letter cites Andrew Eldred as advising the Mayor to “boost support for the EWA [Experienced Worker Assessment] route, including providing the infrastructure to support completion of the EWA.”

The EWA allows people who have already worked in the electrical industry, or a closely related field to gain a qualification, provided that they can demonstrate adequate existing knowledge and fill gaps through training and experience before taking an assessment of competence.

Read the full open letter to London Mayor Sadiq Khan here.

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