Victorian Power Networks, the operator of electricity distributors Powercor and CitiPower, has been named as a finalist in the Victorian Training Awards for its focus on providing employees the skills and training needed to continue delivering safe and reliable power to customers in an evolving industry.
The Operator has been recognised in the Large Employer of the Year category at the Victorian Training Awards, which recognise the outstanding achievements of Victoria’s Technical and Further Education (TAFE) and training sector.
Powercor and CitiPower deliver electricity to 1.1 million homes and businesses across Melbourne, central and western Victoria, and employ 2,000 people across these areas.
Powercor and CitiPower’s General Manager of People, Culture and Legal, Peter Wilkins, said being named a finalist was recognition of the networks’ commitment to its employees.
“Our people are our greatest asset – they operate and maintain the safety and reliability of our electricity networks, so we are proud to be recognised as among the state’s best when it comes to training our people and keeping them safe. We’ve sustained our investment in developing our people as the industry continues to evolve with an expanded program of development options.” said Mr Wilkins.
Powercor and CitiPower training spans technical through to professional subjects across all experience levels, supporting apprentices and university graduates through to field employees and senior management. At present, there are 44 apprentices and trainees and ten graduate engineers in the business.
Since 2001, CitiPower and Powercor have supported 410 apprentices and trainees, and 70 graduate engineers, highlighting the strong commitment to the next generation of line-workers, cable joiners, electrical engineers and meter technicians.
Training and investment in staff are integral to the culture at CitiPower and Powercor and uptake of training is strong, with seven in ten employees participating in 2018 alone. In the same year, 4,000 training hours per month were delivered to employees via in-house programs, while 20 employees received financial support to undertake part-time external study. The majority of training investment took place across trades, technical and safety training for field and operational employees.
“On any given day, one team member might be developing strategic leadership skills via our partnership with Melbourne Business School, while another joins cables underground alongside an industry veteran,” Mr Wilkins said.
“As the energy industry continues to evolve, the capability and behaviours of our workforce are critical to our success. We know we must continue to invest in our people to secure a long-term sustainable future for our business and ensure we are delivering in the best interest of our customers and the communities we serve.”
The 65th Victorian Training Awards take place on 6th September 2019 in Melbourne.