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Winners celebrate recognition for driving investment in skills and training

38 energy and utilities and supply chain companies commended for accomplishing key skills commitments 

Energy & Utility Skills hosted an award ceremony in Birmingham (Thursday 9 May) to honour companies supporting the ‘Procurement Skills Accord’, a national initiative from the Energy & Utilities Skills Partnership to encourage investment in training and skills across the supply chain. In its second year, the initiative is supported by 56 signatories, including leading energy and utilities companies, UK and European utility asset owners, and supply chain organisations. 38 companies were recognised for their pioneering efforts to transform investment in technical and operational skills. 

Hosted by Nick Ellins, Chief Executive of Energy & Utility Skills, the awards highlight the work and best practice of the companies striving to successfully deliver and cascade the Procurement Skills Accord’s five key challenging commitments* to address sector-wide skills gaps and continuously improve skills performance across the supply chain. 

High level findings from this year’s Annual Report of the Procurement Skills Accord (known as the Annual Review Sector Report) were shared at the ceremony. The report was released today to the accord’s signatories and presents the outcomes and achievements of the Procurement Skills Accord which is in its implementation phase. 

Positive report headlines this year included: 

  • Skills development is becoming a recognised and valued part of procurement activity with 76% of relevant companies embedding skills development into their procurement processes
  • Procurement and Learning & Development specialists are beginning to work constructively together 
  • Training volumes** increased from 11% to 15% over the year and 5% of the operational/technical workforce are on apprenticeship programmes
  • Skills development principles included in Achilles Utility Vendor Database 
  • There is an increasing wealth of best practice being shared across the industry and over 80% of signatories would recommend joining the Procurement Skills Accord to others 
Nick Ellins said: “Yesterday’s awards are well deserved and demonstrate how procurement practices can be leveraged to build our industry’s future, skilled workforce. Once again, the Procurement Skills Accord has delivered great results and is making a meaningful impact across the supply chain. Through collaboration and the hard work of all the signatories we are increasing investment and building resilience in our workforce that will help deliver the UK’s £0.6 trillion National Infrastructure Plan and essential services to millions of customers and stakeholders daily.
“We strive for excellence and recognise we need to build on our success. Over the next year, we will continually improve our processes and work with both clients and suppliers to ensure we overcome the challenges of implementing our five key principles.”
Kate Davies, Chief Operating Officer at Energy & Utility Skills, commented: “I’m delighted to see the progress the initiative has made over the past year. This has only been made possible by the incredible work of all our ‘Procurement Skills Accord’ supporters. They have taken up the skills challenge in our industry and are delivering against the accord’s robust commitments, ensuring the sector proactively invests in training and development across the supply chain. It has also been encouraging to see that institutional investors are paying increasing attention to how companies invest in and optimise their human capital. I have been heartened by the wealth of best practice being shared across the sector. Through our collaboration we remain committed to building a diverse and inclusive pipeline of talent for the future.” 
The awards were presented by Chris Norbury, HR Director at E.ON and Chair of The Energy & Utilities Skills Partnership Delivery Board, and James Coldwell, Investor Engagement Manager at the Workforce Disclosure Initiative. 
Chris Norbury said: “It’s a pleasure to present these awards. The Procurement Skills Accord continues to demonstrate that procurement practices can be successfully leveraged to encourage investment in training and skills development across the supply chain. We had 28 award winners last year and to see this increase to 38 this year, despite the criteria getting stricter, is a remarkable achievement. Congratulations to all involved.”
Award Winners: 
1. Alpha Construction Limited
2. AmcoGiffen
3. Amey Utilities
4. Andrew Hughes Utility Services Ltd
5. Avidety Ltd
6. Balfour Beatty
7. Caecillian Ltd
8. CMW
9. Dunphy Combustion Ltd
10. DW Utility Services Ltd
11. E.ON UK
12. Gallagher
13. Industrial Blower Services Ltd
14. Instalcom Limited
15. Kier Utilities and Rail
16. Lanes Group
17. M A Utilities Ltd
18. Morgan Sindall Infrastructure N|E|W
19. MWH Treatment Ltd
20. National Grid
21. nmcn
22. Northern Gas Networks
23. Northern Powergrid
24. Northumbrian Water Limited
25. O’Connor Utilities Ltd
26. Pennon Group
27. RJ McLeod (Contractors) Ltd
28. Rockmount Utilities Ltd
29. S and S Utilities
30. Sapphire Utility Solutions Ltd
31. Scottish Power
32. Siemens Energy Management
33. Skanska Utilities
34. Southern & Redfern Industrial Solutions Ltd
35. SSE
36. Thames Water Utilities Ltd
37. UK Power Networks
38. VGC Group

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