ECITB Works On Expanding UK Oil & Gas Workforce

The Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB) is working hard to build the capacity and capability of the Oil & Gas workforce through the development of training and qualifications to; support the sectors growth, to assure high standards of competency and to allow the UK to compete globally.

Many of the skilled personnel needed for the development of the UK Oil & Gas sector, can be found in allied sectors and the military. To support the transition of skills, the ECITB has introduced two initiatives; ReSkill for craft personnel and ReEngineer for technicians, designed to enhance skills and competency for the offshore environment.

Blair Barclay, ECITB’s Technical Programmes Manager said: “The ECITB is working hard to address the skills shortage in the North Sea, not only to attract more people but to attract the right people. We want to ensure that appropriate courses like the ReSkill and ReEngineer programmes are available to give people the opportunity to develop their skills and competency for a career in the Oil & Gas sector.”

The ECITB is also working in collaboration with other trade organisations, managed by Opito, to conduct Labour Market Intelligence research. This research, requested by Government, is expected to produce an accurate report on skills shortages in the Oil & Gas sector to assist industry, Government, training providers and policy makers to bridge the skills gap.

As well as attracting talented people to the North Sea, the ECITB is focussed on improving safety and has developed training courses and technical competence tests in Mechanical Joint Integrity and Small Bore Tubing, to help reduce the release of unplanned hydrocarbon gases; a critical issue for the offshore industry. The ECITB also worked closely with Step Change in Safety to launch the second updated version of the ‘Routes to Competence’ document on Mechanical Joint Integrity.

“In 2012, the ECITB Approved Mechanical Joint Integrity providers delivered MJI training courses to over 2000 learners and delivered MJI technical tests with a 90 per cent pass rate. I’m pleased to say, this model is already impacting on the offshore industry by raising skills standards and assisting the reduction of hydrocarbon releases, a major health & safety driver with all companies operating in the North Sea,” said Blair Barclay.

The ECITB has also developed products for the International market including its International Health & Safety Passport (IHSP), the International Competency in Engineering Scheme (ICE) and the International Apprenticeship Scheme.

Over the next five years, the ECITB will secure more than 300,000 training opportunities for new entrants and existing members of the engineering construction workforce; investing at least £125m into the delivery of apprenticeships, training programmes and the development of qualifications for sectors across the industry.

As an employer-led organisation, the ECITB works with engineering construction employers to develop training programmes and qualifications needed by the industry. With a workforce of around 440,000 people, the UK Oil & Gas sector is an important economic component of the industry and with investment continuing to grow, so is the need for skilled professionals.

Press Release, September 03, 2013


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