Adam Ritchie renewables
A surge of renewable energy investment is transforming the UK economy and with it changing the energy jobs landscape forever. Business Development Manager Adam Ritchie talks about how Morson, with decades of experience in the energy sector, can help source niche talent in renewables:
Years like 2020 can often bring about seismic changes in the business landscape. Changes to industry dynamics along with renewed governmental pressures can combine to accelerate innovations, bringing them to the centre of the revivals.
In the first few months of 2020, Britain relied on renewable energy like it never has before. In fact, for the first time in history, the power generated by clean, renewable energy was greater than that which was generated by traditional fossil fuels.
Furthermore, with greatly limited travel throughout 2020 and the early parts of 2021, emissions were significantly reduced across the world. UK vehicle emissions dropped 60% at the height of the lockdown, and globally emissions were down a record 7%, owed in no small part to the stringent limitations imposed on air travel.
Stats like this help create a public attitude in favour of renewable energy, with a greater number of people in the energy sector looking towards renewable energy jobs.
This isn’t the first time the rise of green energy has spurred on an ailing economy. After the 2009 financial crash, the Confederation of British Industry estimated that green economy contributed at least a third of the UK’s economic growth in 2010-11.
Economists believe that the renewable energy industry, with support from the wider public, could create a huge surge in renewable jobs and projects across the UK and the world.
An energy jobs surge
Stats from RenewableUK suggest that if the Government takes steps to maximise the economic benefits of renewable energy, a surge in contracts for renewable energy projects will result in a tidal wave of £20billion in investment and 12,000 new jobs in energy and construction.
The real benefit of these roles is that we’re equipping ourselves for the future, with the skills required for renewable energy roles being future-proofed. Training people now and getting them prepared to fill this surge of new energy jobs not only bolsters the low-carbon economy but the wider economy at a time of looming post-COVID recession and job losses.
Of course, there’s also the important point that we’re helping to address a key global issue – climate change. So why is this happening now?
The reduced risk for renewable energy
Improved technology, greater advocacy, and rapidly falling costs associated with the infrastructure required to deliver renewable energy means that the risks formerly associated with the sector have been greatly reduced in recent years. Roads to renewable energy are therefore cleared, so it’s no surprise that we’re seeing more energy businesses moving towards renewable energy.
The move is already happening
Our client Scottish Power is poised to invest billions in the UK’s renewable energy sector industry in the next few years. This includes an onshore wind boost as the Government u-turned on previously blocking financial support for such projects. This is a big boost for the business and the country, allowing for the creation of more jobs in renewables.
Conversely, oil giants are warning that job losses could be faced in the sector, with billions removed from their spending plans – the loss of demand during the coronavirus pandemic was reflected in a colossal drop in fossil fuel prices. Indeed, the pandemic seems to be accelerating the trend towards renewable energy quite dramatically, which can have a positive effect on the renewable jobs market and, importantly, in addressing climate change concerns.
How we’re positioned to help
As the largest engineering recruiter in the UK our diverse candidate pool gives our clients access to unique skills and expertise across new and existing markets and our international footprint gives us access to the best talent globally.
An industry study we conducted on behalf of Scottish Power indicated that within the next 10 years, 30-40% of current jobs in the current energy sector and the associated supply chain will not exist and thus will transform into new jobs. We have over 50 years’ experience in sectors such as nuclear and oil & gas and therefore have knowledge of how skills can be transferred from these adjacent markets, something that will be critical in the coming years. For example, our strong manufacturing experience will add value to organisations designing and building in the UK, especially across the solar and wind markets.
Our decommissioning expertise in both oil and nuclear also plays a pivotal part in the government’s green initiatives, supporting on key projects such as Sizewell and Sellafield.
Going beyond the traditional transactional recruitment model, as the race for renewable energy talent ramps up over the coming years, our core differentiator is our access to an extensive skills network across our branches. We use a wide range of attraction techniques, from recruitment team industry knowledge, to database and networking, and PR, social and marketing support to help your brand shine.
Our industry analysis indicates that some of the key areas for candidates in the UK are Scotland and the South East. Brighton, Guildford, Oxford and Reading in particular have a high level of active candidates with relatively few jobs in renewables in the local area. Almost two-thirds of these (61%) have more than 8 years of experience in the industry with a big focus on Project Management and Project Engineers.