Powercor’s Kyle Phillips is proof that a rewarding career in the electrical industry is open to all if you are willing to put your heart into the job.
For Kyle, it was not a case of signing on to an apprenticeship at 16 to begin his electrical career.
He did not start his working life in the industry. Indeed, Kyle began his career in retail. However, having decided he wanted a career change, he knew he needed to get qualified if he was to make the most of becoming an electrical engineer.
“I worked for a range of different companies but decided to start my studies to become an electrician and, whilst doing so, looked for a company that could give me the support and opportunities I was looking for,” he said.
Kyle went to college to obtain his Level 2 qualifications and then joined Powercor as a trainee where he began his studies for his NCQ level 3 qualifications. The qualification was key. Once he achieved the NVQ, he was able to apply to work for his Installation Electrician ECS (Electrotechnical Certification Scheme) gold card. The gold card enables its holder to work unsupervised, but Kyle was determined to continue his career progression. This required further training, which was fully supported by Powercor.
First were the 2394 and 2395 qualifications, which cover the skills needed to be fully able to undertake inspection, testing and verification work. This was followed by the SSSTS course and qualification, designed for commercial electricians and is in effect a health and safety course for those managing a team on site. The course is comprehensive and enabled Kyle to then look to obtain his ECS Black Card, which enables the holder to manage a team of electricians.
It has been a decade-long journey for Kyle with Powercor to progress from trainee to the firm’s Technical Project Manager.
“Kyle is a very significant part of our team and proves once again anything can be achieved if you focus on your goal,” said Richard Grace Powercor’s Managing Director. “We are delighted to see the way in which he has been able to progress his career and make the most if the skills he has developed through hard work and application.”
Kyle added the past 10 years have been hugely rewarding but have also been challenging.
“I am just delighted to have been able to prove that this is a career that is open to anyone, from any walk of life, and it does not matter where you find yourself in your career at the moment.”
“It is a question of how much you are willing to do for yourself,” he explained. “I went to college to obtain my level 2 qualifications and then joined Powercor who were happy to support me.
“It has been a ten-year journey in which I have gone from apprentice to running a team. I have been fortunate given I have benefitted from a lot of opportunities at Powercor and they are very keen on supporting staff development.
“I think when they see someone who is excited to be in the industry and keen to learn they are very happy to help with the development of their staff. I think it is a real journey and one which really needs the support of your employer to allow you to make the most of the efforts you are willing to put in.”
For Kyle the journey is still far from over and he is keen to build on the progress he has made. Powercor continues to grow rapidly in what remains a dynamic time for the electrical sector as renewable energy and new electrical infrastructure continues to expand as the UK moves towards a net zero carbon economy.