54 new starters power into a new career

04 May 2022

Fifty apprentices and trainees took a huge step up in their career when they participated in their first hands-on training sessions in late February, bringing the total number of apprentices working in the business to 185. Four new university graduates also joined the organisation, making the group Essential Energy’s largest-ever cohort of apprentices, trainees and university graduates.

“We were astounded by the quality of applicants we had this year and are proud to think that this represents the reputation of the program and the value people place to working for a regionally-based company that thinks globally,” said John Cleland, Chief Executive Officer.

The career pathways strategy helps us deliver on our commitment to continue sharing a better energy future for the regional, rural and remote communities in our footprint through a diverse and skilled workforce.

The total new employees into the business through the programs consist of 37 Powerline Worker apprentices, five Asset Inspector trainees, five new Field Operations Trainees and three apprentice Zone Substation Electrical Technicians. This represents an increase of more than 20% on the 2021 intake. In addition, four new graduates are working in the Engineering and Information Technology group.

Proud Indigenous man, Koby Thurston from Dunedoo in Gamilaroi and Wiradjuri country, joined Essential Energy in 2021 through the Indigenous Pre-Employment Program and is one of three trainees successful in progressing through to a full apprenticeship.

He commented “I feel Essential Energy’s encouragement to the Indigenous community to apply for jobs is really great. My experience working for Essential Energy as a young Indigenous man is definitely like no other as they offer so much support and wellbeing groups for young Indigenous people that are working for them.”

Our newest powerline apprentices will undertake a four-year program, combining formal training with on-the-job experience, covering all aspects of operating a modern electricity network.

The Indigenous Pre-Employment Program has recruited five Field Operations Trainees who commenced their training alongside the apprentice intake.

“This program continues to provide a career pathway for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men and women into the business and is one that I am personally really proud of. It is a key pillar of our Reconciliation Plan and our vision that First Nation peoples across our network area have equal opportunities to all Australians for education, employment and social participation,” continued Mr Cleland.

The new apprentices, trainees and graduates come from a diverse range of backgrounds, with 40 per cent of the new Apprentices and Trainees identifying with at least one diversity group, including 16 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and four females.The apprentices and trainees represent locations from across the network footprint: Barham, Bathurst, Berrigan, Berrigan, Blayney, Bombala, Bulahdelah, Buronga, Casino, Cobar, Cooma, Coonabarabran , Coonamble, Cowra, Dubbo, Gloucester, Griffith, Hillston, Kempsey, Leeton, Lismore, Molong, Moruya, Narrabri, Nyngan, Orange, Parkes, Tamworth, Taree, West Wyalong, Young.

We welcome these new colleagues to Essential Energy.

Apprentice Koby

Koby Thurston, Apprentice Powerline Worker