The importance of ongoing training in professional development
There are many exciting and skilled careers available in the construction and built environment sector. It’s an industry that will always need enthusiastic, talented and hard-working young people to help keep the machinery of the Welsh economy moving.
In this article, Chris Jenkins, design manager at RDM Electrical & Mechanical Services, looks at some of the opportunities apprenticeships and vocational training can offer young people in developing an exciting and rewarding career.
Since I first started out as an apprentice, I’ve worked in multiple roles from estimating, project management and, eventually, managing the design of multi-million-pound design and build projects. The diverse nature of the industry, offering unlimited career progression opportunities, is what really appealed to me.
I have now progressed into a director role within our business, and I am still able to continue my professional development with key industry technologies and associations.
One of the great things about the industry is that it’s so diverse. No two days are the same. Technology is continually evolving, and our industry is at the forefront of the built environment.
I am, therefore, a great believer in the importance of continuing to work towards relevant qualifications. Qualifications are an essential metric within the business. This contributes to the competency of our workforce alongside the hands-on experience our employees gain.
Here at RDM Electrical & Mechanical Services, we pride ourselves on the continual professional development of our staff, and we make a point of offering career progression from apprentice through to degree level training. We also support staff in gaining industry associated qualifications and memberships such as The IET and CIBSE.
Put simply, in order to maintain the highest standards within the company, we are committed to our workforce being continually trained, qualified and experienced to ensure competency with the latest technologies and innovation within our sector.
The diverse nature of our industry means it is critical to make people aware of the opportunities available to them as a career path as early as possible. As current teaching of the construction and built environment sector is limited, many students are not aware of our industry/sector until later in their academic life, and therefore, may already have chosen an alternative career path.
An understanding of the built environment from an earlier age will help inspire the next generation of engineers. Understanding the wider industry will also develop the importance of knowledge and interaction between all trades.
There are many good reasons for recommending a career in the construction industry, including:
- Qualifications & life skills
- Experience – on the job training (both site and office based)
- Opportunities for career progression – a diverse range of specialisms and career positions:
- You can look to specialise in a specific area of the industry i.e. building controls/lighting/ High Voltage/Life Safety Systems etc.
- You can work in many roles from site-based engineer/design/estimating/project management/commissioning engineer etc.
- Innovation & technology – with the fast-paced development of new smart technologies, there are more and more roles developing with the industry.
- Rewarded from day one – excellent rates of pay.
But don’t just take my word for it, here are some thoughts from our 2nd year Apprentice Electrical Engineer, Drew Evans:
“Working as an apprentice in the industry is very enjoyable and I have been taught so much information by qualified people. Starting as an apprentice I was worried that people wouldn’t want to help me with work, but it is the complete opposite as everyone wants the best for you and wants to help you develop in your career.
“The construction industry is full of opportunities and all of them lead to a great career. There are so many courses in college and university which are good to help you further your learning which are part of the apprenticeship.
“I would recommend anyone who is interested in the industry to go for it. I was questioning whether it would suit me, and I haven’t looked back since.”
To find out more about the opportunities for skilled careers in the construction and built environment sector, with case studies from students and employers, including RDM Electrical & Mechanical Services, click here.
For more information about apprenticeship opportunities with RDM Electrical & Mechanical Services, or even just to have a chat about possible work experience, contact us on 01792 701256 or email firstname.lastname@example.org