Jimmy and Richard receiving the award

VGC has been accepted as a signatory to the Energy and Utilities Skills Partnership Procurement Skills Accord.

Signing up to the accord is a commitment to support the energy and utilities sector in addressing skills gaps in the workforce.

Signatories must fulfil a series of stringent requirements. They may then sign their agreement to five major commitments:

1 – To address sector-wide skills gaps and shortages

Create and maintain skills development. The accord signatories aim to have 5% of people enrolled on relevant programmes.

2 – To promote signing up to the accord through the supply chain

Encourage their supply chain to sign up to the accord. The aim is that the whole supply chain will eventually meet the requirements.

3 – To promote relevant skills development across the supply chain through procurement

Use their contracts to support their supply chain to increase relevant skills development.

4 – To continuously improve performance

Drive continuous improvement in their own sustainable workforce practices (and those of their suppliers).

5 – To monitor and report

Each year, signatories will report on the percentage of operational staff (involved in the energy and utilities sector) undertaking relevant skills development.

Nick Ellins at the Procurement Skills Accord event
Nick Ellins, CEO of the Energy & Utility Skills Group speaking at the awards event

Companies that do not have a relevant supply chain are excluded from commitments 2 and 3.

The awards panel commented on VGC’s submission report for Jan – Dec 2018:

“A very good continuous improvement plan has been submitted, which includes areas of improvement such as your workforce skills, skills gaps/shortages and how to improve performance.

“We can see a great deal of effort has gone into this submission. We can see you value the importance of having a skilled and sustainable workforce.”

Operations manager James Callaghan and operations director Richard Palin accepted the award on behalf of VGC at the awards workshop and ceremony in Birmingham on 9 May 2019.

More about the Procurement Skills Accord

Procurement Skills Accord logoThe Procurement Skills Accord was developed by the Energy and Utilities Skills Partnership to address skills challenges in the sectors’ supply chain. The accord is designed to encourage procurement practices that promote and lock-in sustained investment in the technical and operational skills that the sector needs most. Signatories gain recognition for their strategic commitment to investing in employee skills development.

Each signing organisation must commit to support the EUSR target of 5% of operational headcount enrolled in formal training relevant to technical or engineering roles within the energy and utility sector.The ultimate aim is for it to be standard practice for signatories to adopt the commitments within the Accord and, in turn, to cascade them down to their own suppliers.

Main photo (L to R): James Coldwell, senior engagement manager at the Workforce Disclosure Initiative, Jimmy Callaghan, Richard Palin, Chris Norbury, HR director at EON and chair of the EUSP Delivery Board, Nick Ellins, CEO of the Energy & Utility Skills Group.

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