Graduate development programme
ENER-G offers bright future for ‘green-collar’ engineers
Renewable and energy efficient technology group ENER-G has launched a structured careers programme designed to turn today’s top engineering graduates into the senior executives of tomorrow. Photo: Graduate mechanical engineer Ben Richardson is rising to the challenge as a Junior Applications Engineer for ENER-G. He is pictured with one of the company’s combined heat and power units.
The new programme provides an opportunity for graduates to join the high growth low carbon sector and feeds directly into ENER-G’s global expansion strategy that has seen the Greater Manchester-based group generate turnover of £90 million – a 400% increase over six years. ENER-G has more than 700 largely engineering employees worldwide, with companies in the UK, Hungary, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Norway and Poland, as well as joint ventures in South Africa, Mexico and Spain. The launch of the company’s graduate development programme follows the government’s publication of the UK Low Carbon Industrial Strategy which states that the UK low carbon and environmental services and goods (LCEGS) sector is worth £106 billion and employs 880,000 people. This sector is one of the few areas of the UK economy expected to maintain positive growth rates through the downturn – rising by over 4% per annum to 2015 and employing more than one million people in skilled, well paid jobs.
According to analysis by Innovas the global LCEGS sector was worth £3 trillion in 2007/8 and could grow to an estimated £4.3 trillion or more by 2015.
“Industries in the ‘green’ sector are chiefly engineering-based, requiring traditional engineering disciplines and this is the founding principle of our graduate development programme,” explained ENER-G group managing director Derek Duffill.
“High calibre engineers are at a premium and we believe the environmental technology sector will continue to generate explosive growth for many years to come. It offers the long-term career goals and financial rewards that ambitious engineers are looking for. Crucially, it also gives them an opportunity to design, develop, manufacture and operate the technologies that can make such a positive difference to society on a global level.”
ENER-G has four main business areas: Energy Management; which uses intelligent controls and technologies in buildings to deliver savings and lower emissions; Cogeneration which involves the design, manufacture, installation and operation of combined heat and power plant to efficiently generate electricity, heating and cooling; Renewable Energy that taps the natural heat from the earth to provide heating and cooling systems for buildings, and harnesses biogas from anaerobic digestion, landfill and other sources to produce ‘green’ energy; and Energy from Waste – using advanced thermal conversion technology to create an environmentally friendly alternative to landfill and incineration.
Derek Duffill continued:”Our graduate programme will make a crucial contribution to ENER-G’s strategic growth plans – boosting the supply of talented people to meet our constantly expanding business needs. We already recruit graduates and placement students to one-off positions, but this is the first time we have approached graduate recruitment as a coordinated group activity.
”The aim is to bring in graduates whose background and skills will enable them to introduce new ideas to the group and also to provide candidates for senior managerial and technical positions in the future. In particular, we are targeting mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and building services”.
Graduates will be recruited by the broader group, and then assigned to a specialist business area to give them a sense of belonging and ongoing personal development.
In addition to early experience in a real job, ENER-G also offers an off-the-job development programme over the first two years of employment. This covers areas such as health & safety; finance; contractual awareness; leadership; presentation and negotiating skills. The company will also help graduates achieve chartered status, and every graduate employee will be mentored by a senior manager.
Derek Duffill added: “ENER-G is a strong example of UK engineering and technological excellence. Our innovative products and services are in demand across the globe – fuelling our ongoing growth.” Ben Richardson, a 22 year-old graduate mechanical engineer, works as a Junior Applications Engineer for ENER-G. He said: “It’s good to work in a growing industry where there’s better job security and the added bonus of helping to save the environment. I enjoy working for a busy and rapidly expanding company. Every day is different and challenging and I’ve been given a good deal of responsibility and autonomy. ENER-G recently opened an additional factory at its headquarters in Salford, Greater Manchester, to keep pace with worldwide demand for its renewable and energy efficient technologies. This has allowed the company to increase production of its combined heat and power and biogas generator units by 50%.