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  • Writer's pictureStephanie Somerville

How Can Career Support Benefit the Power Industry and What Are We Doing to Help?

Updated: Feb 19

Late last year, the API were invited by the National Careers Institute (part of Australian Governments Department of Workplace Relations) to discuss a ‘a consistent approach to promoting clean energy careers to support Australia’s commitment to achieving Net Zero.’


The discussion follows the release of the study titled ‘The Clean Energy Generation: workforce needs for a net zero economy’ undertaken by Jobs and Skills Australia to better understand the workforce needs for Australia’s transition to a clean energy economy.



Why is this important to us?

  • Australia’s commitment to a national transition to Net Zero will have a significant impact on the Australian economy and labour market over coming decades.

  • To meet the challenge of this transition the availability of a workforce with the right skills mix, in the right locations, at the right time, is essential.

  • The clean energy sector will demand some highly specialised skilled workers but will also require generalist skilled workers.

  • As a developing sector with a mix of traditional and newly emerging occupations, training pathways and qualifications will continue to evolve.

  • Jobs will not be limited to highly skilled workers, as the sector will have meaningful career opportunities at all skill levels.

  • Evidence-based and easily understandable careers information will support people to make decisions about pathways to a career in a sector which is emerging and where jobs may not yet be familiar.


Participants of this discussion were individuals and organisations from a cross section of energy industry employers, workers, governments, and education and training providers and discussed what careers information would be most helpful in sharing the opportunities of the emerging clean energy sector.


The group discussion focused on careers information for regional, rural and remote communities (RRR); career, education and training pathways; careers information for career starters; and workers and regions affected by the net zero transformation. Positively, participants reflected that a potential career in clean energy holds a strong appeal as a way of making a valuable contribution to an individual’s local community and the global community, particularly for young people.

Careers Discussion Outcome:

What the API are doing:

The clean energy sector is at a disadvantage in attracting workers - although ‘clean energy’ is widely recognised in terms of technology (ie wind turbines or solar panels and farms), there is limited awareness of the full scope of the sector and the occupations it includes.

We have set up our Careers in Power website to share the information on potential careers in the power sector (which includes clean/green energy) with profiles of students and professionals in the industry as well as information on the opportunities that exist, programs to be involved in and resources for teachers, parents and high school students.

Different cohorts of career seekers (and their influencers) have different information needs and the best channels of communication to reach them also vary.

We are branching out into different deliveries of information, with building and releasing tiktok and Instagram content for the younger generation, as well as our tired and true emails. This year we will be releasing more resources for career professionals and teachers to empower them to share with their students as well.

 

Measuring the success of careers information might be difficult.

The API currently measure our engagement through platform analytics as well as continual feedback with our members, program participants, teachers and students. We see this growing as our offering grows, but it is absolutely critical in our success that we deliver the information that is wanted.

 

There’s a need for collaboration for this emerging sector, particularly establishing clarity of language around the sector, roles and pathway options and alternatives.

We continue to work on making sure accurate careers information is shared and look forward to creating more knowledge in this space with our career partners and supporters.

 

And lastly, here is a list of everything API is doing for Careers in Power!


  • Project Energise: The term we use to encapsulate all our work in promoting Careers in the power sector/STEM and the support we offer our member organisations in this space.

  • Electrify your Career – supporting parents and school students you in your journey by providing helpful hints, ideas to ponder, opportunities to strengthen your skills, and knowledge to build your understanding of a career that will not only be extremely rewarding, but improves the communities within Australia.

  • School Programs – currently Day in the life of a 7-year-old (primary focussed) and supporting ATSE’s Solar Car STELR Program (High School), new programs are coming in 2024!

  • Power Ambassador Program - recruiting volunteer Power Ambassadors from our wonderful community of passionate power professionals so we can ENERGISE the imaginations of Australia’s young people about careers in power.

  • Lifting the profile of the industry and the possible careers through our social media impact.

 

For more information on the API's Careers in Power, please head to our Careers in Power webpage or contact API Engagement Manager, Stephanie Somerville (stephanie.somerville@api.edu.au).

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