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New Yorkshire Facility Opens with Great Success!

Posted by Michaela Elcoat on 11th May 2018

On Wednesday 9th May, we officially opened our brand new Yorkshire facility on Hawthorne Park, East Leeds. The event opened with an inspirational speech from CEO Carl Bennett, who spoke about his journey to forming Trade Skills 4U in 2005 and the reasons he did so at the age of 40. Carl continued to speak about the positive impacts electrical training courses can have on people’s lives and the excellent company values we possess.

After Carl finished his speech, we heard from Leeds City Councillor Mohammed Rafique the Executive Member for Employment, Enterprise and Opportunity. Mohammed gave a warm welcome to the new centre, and stated how excited he was to introduce us to the city and regional area. He went on to mention the rate and speed Yorkshire is growing and how there is a great need for electricians and fellow tradesman in the area. He also said these newly skilled people will contribute greatly to the region.

Councillor Rafique finished by thanking us for investing in the city and said that he is looking forward to hearing about the progress students make at the centre going forward.

 

Click below to watch the video:

 

 

Once the speeches had finished, guests were invited to explore the centre and speak with tutors and staff about the various courses available. Others ventured outside to watch the Tesla car do its dance! Or have a go on the power tools supplied by Hitachi. Quest electrical wholesalers were also in attendance to speak to those who needed any advice. 

Inside the building there was a chance to win a KT63 by completing the giant Buzz-wire in the fastest time. The quickest time we recorded was an incredibly fast 35 seconds by Haider Nawaz, so a tester will be on its way to him soon! 

Throughout the afternoon there were various seminars and interactive sessions taking place that our guests were welcome to join. These included an 18th Edition Preview, Electric Vehicle charging seminar hosted by Rolec and an interactive practical and Interactive Science session. 

We are extremely happy that the day ran very smoothly and hope that our guests enjoyed the activities on offer and free food supplied by KK Catering Ltd. We’d like to give a massive thank you to everyone who attended and we hope to see you back in the centre very soon. We’re very excited for the new courses to begin on the 14th May 2018 and wish all prospective students the very best.

If you would like to visit the centre for a tour or to and speak to a tutor please contact us on: 0800 856 4448 alternatively, if you are interested in booking a course, please Click here for a full list of courses on offer at the new Yorkshire facility.

Categories: yorkshire, leeds, training, electrician

James Lasowski - Case Study

Posted by Elaine Hammond on 16th January 2018

Case Study

Name: James Lasowski

Courses studied: C&G2365, C&G2357, C&G 2392-10 Inspection & Testing, 17th Edition

 

We recently spoke to James to find out what his reasons were for changing his career after 10 years to train as a sparky. 

What did you do before you became an electrician?

Before I became an electrician, I was a lifeguard for 10 years. It was a challenging role but very much the same every day and I became bored with the role as there was not much development to be had.

What was your reason for Training?

My reason for training was that I believed gaining a trade to be a fantastic career move, plus it had been suggested by a friend that Trade Skills 4U do a good electrician's courses.

Tell us about why you chose to become an electrician?

I chose to become an electrician because I have worked on site before as a labourer and was always interested in what the electricians were working on. I also think that being an electrician is an interesting role where I can develop and learn at my own pace.

Why did you decide to take the C&G2365 course?

I chose to take the C&G 2365 course so that I could learn more about the electrical trade and develop practical skills whilst learning from a teacher who has previously been on the tools.

Tell us about the job you do now and how this training has helped you?

At the moment I am working for agencies across London. This training has helped me by providing the necessary practical experience and theoretical knowledge which I can apply to my work on site.

The course also helped me gain my first work in the industry by having a session dedicated to CV building which helped identify key things to include that employers would look for. They also had a Facebook page which would regularly be updated with new roles as it is always interesting to see what is out there.

How long have you been working in the electrical industry?

I have been working in the electrical industry for 2 years now and have loved it!

What other courses are you hoping to attend at Trade Skills 4U and why?

I plan to attend the Inspection and Testing 2391 because I want to develop my testing skills.

Please tell us about your training with Trade Skills 4U. What were your best bits, difficult bits, interesting bits?

My favourite bit at Trade Skills 4U was the practical sessions. My tutor was a good teacher and explained the practical side very well. However, I did find the fault finding difficult and got confused on a few of the tasks but I found the theory very interesting, especially when I was doing the math.

What are your plans for the future?

In the future I plan on becoming a sole trader so that I can perform my ow inspection and testing.

What is the best experience you have had so far in your new career?

My favourite period was when I was working as an electrical mate in a hotel in Tower Bridge. I learned a lot about metal work and wiring circuits in toilets.

How would you describe the facilities and training at Trade Skills 4U?

I would say that the classroom atmosphere was brilliant and the materials were good, and of course really enjoyed the free coffee.

 

We would like to thank James for sharing his experiences with us and wish him well for the future.

Categories: qualifications, training, case study, electrician

Noemi Willenbockel Case Study

Posted by Elaine Hammond on 6th December 2017

case study

Name: Noemi Willenbockel

Courses: City & Guilds 2392-10 Inspection & Testing Course

Noemi recently completed a 4 year MEng degree in Engineering with a specialisation in Electrical Engineering, particularly renewable energy technologies. She is now working as a graduate electrical engineer for a company dealing with the delivery of major infrastructure projects.

What is your reason for training?

My reason for training is to develop my skills and gain a better understanding of how electrical installations are designed and tested according to regulations. My educational background focused heavily on the science of electricity generation, transmission and distribution but didn’t teach me about the practicalities of installing a safe electrical system and the governing regulations involved in this. Learning more about how to apply the 17th edition to verify an installation will be hugely beneficial for my current work and future career.

Tell us about why you choose to become an electrician?

While I am not training to become an electrician, I chose to specialise in Electrical Engineering when studying a general engineering course as I was excited by the wide variety of potential work in the electrical industry and the key role of electricity in securing sustainable energy for the future.

How long have you been working in the electrical industry?

I have been working for 3 months now, since September 2017, following 4 years at university.

Tell us about your current job?

My current job is a Project Engineering role, which involves reviewing electrical designs for low voltage power installations and overseeing the progression of the project from the design stage, through to construction and then testing, commissioning and handover.

Why did you decide to take the 2392-10 Inspection & Testing Course and how will this help you in your career?

I chose to attend this course to better understand the requirements for inspection and testing of electrical installations, as this is a key part of the commissioning process on any project. I specifically chose the City & Guilds 2392 course as I am new to testing and had no real practical experience. I wanted to develop my hands-on testing skills to become more familiar with electrical installations in a practical sense as my education to-date has been very theoretical. Learning to use real testing equipment on a sample installation will help me better visualise the design drawings I regularly review at work.

What other courses are you hoping to attend at Trade Skills 4U and why?

I would like to attend the City & Guilds 2396 Electrical Design course. Further knowledge of the design process will also help me in my current role of reviewing designs completed by others, as well as better qualifying me to complete my own designs in potential future job roles.

Tell us about your training experience with Trade Skills 4U?

I had a very good week at Trade Skills 4U. I felt that the course was of a suitable level, challenging enough to keep me fully engaged the entire time but with enough time to take in the course material so that I felt prepared for the assessments at the end of the week. I enjoyed the facilities, getting to practice tests on the demo boards, and found the overall atmosphere of the centre enjoyable.

What is the best experience you have had so far in your new career?

The best part of my new career so far has been the wide variety in my day to day work, I have had the opportunity to learn a lot in a short space of time and it’s been great to work on a real life project after many years of studying.

What are your plans for the future?

My plans for the future are to continue to grow in my job role, developing more experience on project to work towards becoming a chartered Engineer. I would like to work on a range of infrastructure projects, getting to be involved in the whole process of a job from start to finish.

Do you have any advice for other women looking to retrain as an electrician?

My advice would be to not feel intimidated by the stereotypes of the electrical industry being heavily dominated by men. Throughout my time studying, and now working, in Engineering I haven’t felt out of place as a woman or underestimated.

What has your experience been like working in a typically male dominated industry?

I have yet to experience any particular negatives of working in a typically male dominated industry. It can be very noticeable at work sometimes how few women there are around in similar job roles to me but I haven’t felt as if I’ve been treated differently because of this. If anything, I’ve felt a lot of support as in general the industry appears to keen to attract and retain women in Engineering roles.

What opportunities do you think there are for women working in the electrical industry?

In my limited experience in the electrical industry, I believe that while it is very male dominated, this is largely to do with tradition rather than a lack of opportunities for women. Historically careers in the electrical industry haven’t been encouraged as an option for young women thinking about their future. If this were to change then maybe the industry could become more balanced.

Categories: training, qualifications, case study

James Lovett - Case Study

Posted by Elaine Hammond on 22nd November 2017

case study

Name: James Lovett

Courses Studied: C&G2365 Level 2/3, Bronze Package

We caught up with one of our students James Lovett following his training with us to ask how he got on and to find out what his plans are for the future.

Why did you decide to train with us?

After leaving the army I decided to train with Trade Skills 4U as I was able use my ELCAS credits to put towards my resettlement training, also I had heard good things about Trade Skills 4U.

Why did you decide to take the C&G 2365 course and how will this help you?

I decided to take the 2365 course to get a step closer to becoming a fully qualified electrician. I needed to do this in a quicker time period due to having a mortgage etc. I currently work full-time at Gatwick Airport as a Maintenance Electrician and I hope that his course will open more doors for my career.

Tell us about why you chose to become an electrician?

My brother is an electrician and I had a taste of what it was like, so I decided to take my first steps and booked the Bronze Domestic Installer course with Trade Skills 4U. This gave me a good foot in the door to the electrical industry where I worked for a year and a half as a domestic electrician. I then managed to get a job with TA Boxall & Co Ltd as a Maintenance Electrician.

How long have you been working in the electrical industry?

I have been in the industry now for just over 3 years.

What difference has training made to you?

The training has made a massive difference. Now I can go on to complete my NVQ and AM2 Assessment and become a fully qualified confident electrician with the company I work for.

How would you describe the facilities and training at Trade Skills 4U?

The facilities are very good at Trade Skills 4U, with rest areas, free tea and coffee etc. and great support from the tutors.

Please tell us about your training with Trade Skills 4U. What were your best bits, difficult bits, interesting bits?

My best bits were definitely the workshop weeks, putting what you learn on paper into practice and testing it to prove it all works. The difficult bits for me were the maths but with great tutors who explain things really well everything fell into place. The whole course is interesting as you are learning constantly and as you get through each week more and more bits all fall into place.

We would like to thank James for sharing his training experience with us and wish him the very best of luck for the future.

Categories: training, qualifications, case study

The UK Skills Gap - Problem or Opportunity?

Posted by Elaine Hammond on 21st September 2017

UK skills gap

You may well have heard about the skills gap here in the UK - it’s an issue that’s been around for a little while now and to be honest it doesn’t look like it’s going to get much better any time soon!

For those who aren’t that aware of what the skills gap is - there’s a real need in this country for skilled workers in specific industries. You can see the list of industries here. However, there simply aren’t enough people to fill those roles, and therefore a gap has formed.

The good news is that jobs in the trades are becoming more and more popular again, which is fantastic news for anyone wanting to train as an electrician or for those that are already in the trade.

One of the most affected industries is the trades and construction

Why has this happened? Well there are a number of reasons - young people preferring to go to uni, a wider number of courses available for people to choose from, the list could go on and on.

The worry is that the gap could get even wider in the coming years, especially with Brexit on the horizon. It’s unclear the exact effect leaving the EU will have, but if tougher immigration laws come into play, which is likely, then it will make it harder for skilled workers to come into the country and fill the gap. Some might even choose to leave.

Add the housing crisis into the mix, and the government’s pledge to build millions of new homes, and it’s unclear how we’ll close that gap.

But is this really a problem, or should we see it as an opportunity for workers?

There’s no denying that many businesses see it as a problem. According to the Federation of Master Builders’ State of Trade Survey 2017, 40% of construction SMEs are finding skills shortages at their highest rate since 2013. Further research has shown that the skills shortage is costing UK businesses around £2bn a year due to recruitment costs, having to hire temporary workers, and paying over market rates for skilled workers.

However, if we take a look at the other side of the coin, this skills gap represents an unprecedented opportunity for those in this country who want to learn a trade, and of course we’d suggest electrical training as a fantastic choice!

If you can learn a trade, put the work in and prove your worth, then you’re going to be absolutely invaluable at the moment, and in the coming years. It’s an exciting time!

So, what to do if you want to become an electrician?

Well there’s never been more information out there for those unsure about what they want to do for a living, which can be useful but also incredibly overwhelming.

If you think a career as an electrician is the right choice for you, you’ll be glad to learn that it’s the highest paid of all the trades with the average salary being £30,000. It’s also an extremely rewarding career with skills that will always be in demand. Plus, don’t think that this is just a job for the boys there are plenty of very successful women electricians out there, read our blog to find out more!

We have plenty of information right here on our website in the form of our blog which has lots of fascinating articles and case studies, and then if you want to learn more about the training we provide, check out our electrician courses, and of course if you prefer to talk to an experienced course adviser they are here to help too.

Our electrical wholesaler friends at QVS Direct have produced a very handy guide listing all the steps you need to go through and consider if you want to get into the electrical industry, and it features plenty of info from Trade Skills 4U, so we know it’s good! For those with a little more experience or who like to dream big, this fantastic interactive guide from Thomson Local explains how to go about starting your own electrician business.

So every time you hear the doom and gloom about the UK skills gap, think of it as an opportunity for you to learn some highly in-demand skills, earn a decent living and make your mark in the industry.

Why choose us

We help thousands of people gain the knowledge, expertise and qualifications to develop successful careers in the electrical and renewable energy industry, and look forward to having the opportunity to help you too. If you are interested in an electrical training course, please visit our course-finder page, alternatively please call a course advisor on 01293 529777 who will be happy to help.

 

Categories: electrician courses, training, uk skills gap

Paul Aspinall Case Study

Posted by Michaela Elcoat on 3rd January 2017

Name:

Paul Aspinall

Location:

Lancing - West Sussex

Course: 

City & Guilds 2365 Level 2 & 3

 

 

 

 

 

We spoke to Paul about what he's been up to since completing his Level 2 & 3 diploma and how he found employment after the course. 

1. What type of work did you do before becoming an electrician?

I worked in insurance as a Third Party Motor Claims Negotiator.

2. Why did you decide to retrain as an electrician?

I wanted a career change and I have always been interested in the electrical world and have been interested in how electricity works, so I thought it would be a great time to change.

3.  What difference has training with us made to you?

It gave me a great knowledge base and a platform from which I could potentially go into various areas of the electrical field.

4. Did you meet your initial goals through completing the qualification?

I did, and exceeded them. The course taught me more than I thought I would have learnt.

5. What were the highlights of the course?

There were quite a few. The facilities are top class, I had really knowledgeable tutors and the practical experience it taught me was great.

6. What type of employment did you find when completing the course?

I initially got called up by an electrical firm and we installed miles of basket tray and ran cables for new door controls at a flight instruction centre. I have also worked on house rewires as well as various domestic jobs in a variety of places.

7. How long did it take you to find a job?

I actually got called up from a flyer I left with an electrical wholesaler before I had finished my final exams.

8. What job are you doing now?

I have started work at British Gas as an Apprentice Smart Energy Expert.

9. What are your plans for the future?

Starting work at British Gas has given me the security of a job that I sought and there are fantastic opportunities to continue to learn and progress within the company.

10. Would you recommend Trade Skills 4U?

Absolutely. It is by far the best training centre you can go to. The facilities are excellent and the trainers are top class. If anyone is considering going to Trade Skills 4 U, you will not be disappointed.

We wish you the best of luck in your career with British Gas Paul.

Categories: qualifications, training, case study, electrician

Case Study - Steve Kulka

Posted by Michaela Elcoat on 28th October 2016

Today, we spoke with Steve, who at 61 has embarked on a new career as an electrician. He speaks to us about the decision behind his career change and what his plans for the future are.

 

Name:

Steve Kulka

Age: 

61

Location: 

Redhill, Surrey

 

Course: 

Bronze domestic installer

What did you do before studying to become an electrician?

I've been in IT support most of my working life. Until I was 'let go' due to budget constraints, I was a Resources Manager in an IT department for over 10 years. I managed a small team of technicians and between us we were responsible for software support, networking, CCTV, telephones and we dealt with anything that had a 13A plug on it.

Why did you decide to train as an electrician?

I've always felt that 'electrics' was something that appealed to me and I'm the sort of person who needs to be doing something useful that I could take some pride in. When I didn't have a job to go to every morning I started volunteering for a charity that repaired furniture for people who didn't have any (Furnistore) and a weekly computer class for elderly people. I wanted a career where, as long as I was capable, I could work 'til I dropped.

What made you choose Trade Skills 4U?

Once I'd decided what I needed to do to become an electrician, I looked around for organisations that provided the necessary courses. I spoke to people on the phone, checked out websites and prices. Not only could Trade Skills 4U provide what I needed at a reasonable price, but they have an 'open house' facility. I popped round and a very well informed chap in the office showed round all the facilities and answered all my questions. All the staff were very helpful, which is comforting when you are starting something new.

What difference has training with us made to you?

Right from the beginning, I got the impression that the staff were willing to help explain what you needed in a way that made sense. It's not all academic learning. The practical hints and tips from tutors who are seasoned professionals give you a great confidence boost.

Were there any elements of the course you struggled with?

Unless you have some previous which I hadn't, the going can be tough. Most blokes think they can do minor electrical work. The important thing is to do it the safe and correct way. It's important to get the most out of the practical sessions and do the theory homework.

What were the highlights of the course?

Working through the sessions with the tutors and a great bunch of students, some of whom were 'newbies' like me. Passing all the exams!

What are your plans now you have finished the training?

Having completed the Bronze course, I am now updating my CV and LinkedIn. I am contacting companies in my area to see if they would be willing to trust me and let me help out. I need to get some practical experience and put my fresh training to good use. After a while, I'll review my situation to see if I need more training to allow me to specialise. Energy efficiency would be interesting.

Would you recommend Trade Skills 4U?

Definitely. The facilities and the staff are excellent and it's easy to get to. When you are investing that much of your own money, value is important.

What’s the best advice you could give to someone who is thinking about changing their career later on in life?

Be realistic. Starting on a new career path is a bit like starting from scratch when you're young, except you have much more experience and maturity to offer. A change in career probably means that you won't have a lot of useful contacts, so you'll need to network. Don't expect to just be offered a job. You need to convince people that you have something of value to them. Be prepared to be flexible in exchange for the experience.

Steve is proof that anything is possible at any age. Although the thought of a career change can be daunting, you will be surprised that when you finally make that leap you can achieve anything you put your mind to.

Steve we wish you the best of luck finding employment. 

 

Categories: training, qualified, case study

Why Soldiers Make Great Sparkies

Posted by Michaela Elcoat on 11th July 2016

At Trade Skills 4 U we believe those from the forces possess the best characteristics to work as an electrician. As the company is ELC registered, service men and women can use enhanced learning credits towards any of our resettlement courses. Providing them the help they need to start a new career.

Traits between an electrician and soldiers are very similar including; discipline, patience and the ability to problem solve. Combine this with the UK’s current need for qualified electricians, there’s no better time to consider a long and fruitful career in electrical field.

They’re disciplined

Electricians have to follow a logical structure when it comes to installation, inspection and testing. There’s also policies and regulations to adhere to as well as a pattern and sequence that need to be undertaken on each job particularly when inspecting and testing. Soldiers are also excellent listeners and have been trained to follow instructions to the hilt.

They don’t mind hard graft

Soldiers are keen and committed to taking on a challenge and completing a job so it’s finished on time. They are used to both physical and mental hard work, which sets them in good stead to get a job done- big or small.

They don’t mind physical labour

Being an electrician is a hands on job, and can be physically demanding at times in a domestic or commercial setting. Coming from an Army background can be hugely beneficial when entering the electrical trade. Soldiers are at the peak of their physical fitness where stamina is part and parcel of the job. Therefore, they are the perfect candidate to take on a hands-on job.

They like to use brains and brawn

Completing an electrical job requires a combination of strategy building, design work, problem solving and manual labour. Being part of the forces requires soldiers to use their brain to retain information and think quickly. Some electrical jobs can be complicated but with the skillset of a soldier a hard task can be finished competently.

They are honest and usually true to their word

Everyone has heard of the horror stories about tradesman not being completely honest. Soldiers possess a sense of integrity and loyalty. Not only that they are used to following a code of behaviour which sets them apart from the average tradesman and makes them standout as the right man for the job.

They often have a great network of contacts

Being part of a troop and creating a close bond with those you work with in the army has many benefits when a soldier is out of the forces. They will generally have a wide network of connections which can be useful when either calling for additional help or planning a project that requires different disciplines.

They are organised, clean and tidy

There’s nothing better than an electrician who tidies up after them self! Strict regimes and structure are embedded into those who enter the forces from day one. Meaning there should be no mess during or after a job.

There’s many different courses that those from the forces can consider. A C&G 2365 will enable you to work in commercial, domestic and industrial settings, whereas the Bronze and Silver packages will give you the skillset and qualifications necessary to undertake domestic wiring. The qualifications are flexible which means some courses can be split into 4 parts at 1 week intervals (Bronze) that can be adapted to suit your needs. Whilst the 2365 is 2 weeks on and 2 weeks off. This means if you are working whilst undertaking the qualification it gives you the option of working part time. You can also come back and complete elements of the qualification at a time that suits you.

Trade Skills 4 U is very supportive of those who have served in the forces. We want to help them succeed in any way we can which is why we offer a Forgotten Heroes bursary scheme. We offer free training in our centre every week for someone who has been recently injured in military conflicts or to one of our many Forgotten Heroes who are struggling to find their feet following their discharge from the armed forces. To find out how to access the courses speak to a member of the team today 01293 529 777 or click here for resettlement courses or the Forgotten Heroes Scheme.

Categories: qualifications, electrical, training, gatwick, help for heroes, warrington