Employers back new Commitment to professional technicians

Tue.27.Mar.2012 BST

A new formal Commitment to professional technicians has been launched following an 18 month employers’ review revealing an alarming gap between the number of technicians in the UK and the 450,000 skilled roles that will need to be filled if the economy is to recover and continue to compete internationally.

The technicians, skilled to a professional level, are needed to fill roles in engineering, science, medicine and many other technical occupations by 2020 but there are currently only about 15,000 people sufficiently qualified to take those jobs.

The review was undertaken by the Technician Council, a government funded body tasked with making recommendations on the future of technicians.

It sets out eight practical recommendations for action, which will be delivered through this new Commitment backed by UK employers, professional bodies and sector skills councils.

The Commitment, launched by Steve Holliday, CEO of National Grid plc and Chairman of the Technician Council, is supported by Oliver Letwin MP, Minister for Government Policy advice, and John Hayes MP, Minister of State for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning. They hope that the enhanced recognition, rewards and lifelong learning opportunities will encourage more young people to embark on a career in technical skills.

The Technician Council’s recommendations are aimed at providing clear, structured career paths for technicians. They strengthen the infrastructure underpinning the registration and professional development of technicians, provide active support and increase the pool, status, transferability and diversity of professional technicians across all sectors of industry.