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Renewables staffing shortage?

The need to recruit people with the right skills is causing worries in the renewables sector as demand for good employees far outstrips supply.

With the cost of energy rising rapidly, the need for alternative supplies and people with relevant skills to produce it is producing challenges says Stuart Brown, Practice Head of Energy and Natural Resources at UK recruitment consultants Ellis Fairbank.


“The recent controversy over the rising costs of fuel within the UK only highlights the increasing importance placed on the renewable energy market, to get it right,” he said. “With prices for gas and electricity continuing to increase people are starting to think about the alternatives available.”

“It is both an exciting and tumultuous time to work in the energy industry as prices soar and reserves are reportedly reduced. The increasing demand from consumers has further highlighted the need to find alternatives and manage the reserves which we still have available. As a result of this is there is a growing demand for energy professionals at all levels of the industry, especially those with specific sector skills.

“Recruiting into roles with such high demands is never easy and both the client and candidate need to ensure the job is carried out using the best technical ability and leadership.

“On the positive side of the dilemma business leaders don’t foresee that the current skill set will become obsolete, it will be more a case of increasing training for employees to equip them with the latest knowledge. There is however, a general shortage of graduates coming through the ranks and so the lack of energy professionals, which isn’t confined to the renewables sector, could worsen as demand over exceeds the supply of talent available in the years to come.”

The Digest of UK Energy Statistics estimating that there are over 137,000 people directly employed in the energy sector and a further 260,000 employed indirectly in areas such as the support of the UK Continental shelf production.