The CLG select committee report into Part P ‘Building Regulations certification of Domestic electrical work ‘is published today.
It recognised that the introduction of Part P building regulations in 2005 had been successful in driving up standards of installation to the extent that around 40,000 competent electrical installers are now within the available schemes.
It was also recognised that there has been a positive change of attitude particularly by self employed domestic electrical installers and as a consequence knowledge and skills levels are now much higher than they were 10 years ago.
Pictured Above: Carl Bennett MD with Clive Betts MP
Over the last 8 years Tradeskills4U as has played a significant part in the raising of those skills levels for the benefit of the electrical workforce and public safety and we are justly proud of our efforts.
However we know, as a leading electrical training provider to the industry and this is where we agree with the report, that there is room for improvement, particularly with regard to the qualifications a Domestic Electrician should be required to hold to give confidence to the public.
There are a number of recommendations in the report, which the government may or may not adopt. Unfortunately one of the problems with the committee's report, is that we and others in the industry didn’t think they consulted widely enough. For instance they didn’t consult with any of those in the domestic installer or associated trades sector to which this report is directed and employs tens of thousands of people, nor did it seek ideas for training solutions other than the traditional viewpoint and was too ready to accept a narrow view.
The report now goes forward to the government for consultation and review before April 2015, recommending that the qualification of a Domestic Electrician should be equivalent to a Level 3 NVQ. Whilst we agree that a Level 3 qualification and a period of ‘on site’ training is important, we think the qualification should be appropriate to the work the Domestic Electrician carries out, bearing in mind that most of them will be self employed, so in line with the spirit of the report we support a specific Domestic Electrician Level 3 Qualification with an element of on the job training.
The report also goes on to recommend some improvement in public awareness of Part P and a restriction on the number of jobs a Qualified Supervisor can supervise in a year, both of which recommendations we also support.
So what happens next?
Well, this report goes to the Minister Eric Pickles, he will then consult and review sometime before April 2015 and if the recommendations are fully adopted the industry has a target date of 5 years to make the changes.
So for now it’s with the politicians for more consultations. Lets see what they come up with in their wisdom.