Plant & Works Engineering
Academy hosts new Technician Council
Published:  14 October, 2010

The Royal Academy of Engineering is now hosting the new Technician Council, a joint initiative intended to raise the profile of Technicians in the UK. It includes members of the engineering, science, ICT and health communities and is funded by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS). The Technician Council is chaired by National Grid Chief Executive Steve Holliday FREng and had its first meeting in July. The Council was formed in response to the findings of a group, led by Lord Sainsbury, that included The Gatsby Charitable Foundation, The Engineering Council, The Science Council, EngineeringUK, the Department of Health, The Royal Academy of Engineering, the National Apprenticeship Service, the UK Commission for Employment and Skills and others to develop and secure the UK's STEM based sectors by encouraging the training, support, development and recognition of Technicians. The Further Education team at BIS is encouraging the Technician Council to provide a catalyst for the engineering science, ICT and health communities in their work to provide opportunities for progression for people in vocational occupations, and upskilling the workforce. All have a keen interest in the career development of hundreds of thousands of skilled and semi-skilled employees and by working together will ensure that technicians know which qualifications are in demand, and where to find employers that require them. Technician Council chair Steve Holliday FREng said: "As the chief executive of National Grid I am only too aware of how important technicians are to the success of our business. I am delighted to have been asked to chair the Technician Council. I look forward to working with other key stakeholders to build a framework for a modern class of technician to ensure that this critical role in the workplace is more widely recognised and respected. "I am particularly keen to ensure that young people have a better understanding of what technicians do and the rewards that training to be one brings them."