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Eighteen skilled tradespeople from the United Kingdom will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to Western Australia’s energy industry, following a successful overseas recruitment campaign by Western Power.

As part of a larger recruitment drive that primarily focussed on attracting local talent, a dedicated recruitment team was assembled last year to address the labour shortages and tight energy industry market, with fierce competition to secure skilled staff.

The new lineworkers and cable jointers, who began arriving in March, will be based at Geraldton, Pinjarra, Balcatta, and Jandakot depots.

It is an exciting time to join the energy industry in WA with balancing the growth in demand for renewables, need for electrification on a large scale, a changing energy market, significant growth in the transmission network, and new technologies helping Western Power to enable industry and the community to achieve their decarbonisation goals while providing safe, reliable, and affordable electricity to customers.

Western Power Acting Executive Manager People Natalia Smith said local and international need for energy and trade professionals had led to an extremely competitive employment market, which prompted the recruitment team to think outside the box to source the best people for the job.

“Western Power is committed to providing an efficient and reliable network for our customers, and we knew that we needed to act fast to fill these critical roles,” Ms Smith said.

“The market is so competitive locally and interstate that even with our ongoing recruitment campaigns, we still have vacancies for lineworkers and cable jointers.”

The UK was identified as a prime location for a dedicated campaign, as its local network is operationally and structurally similar to WA’s grid.

“We had to prove to the Department of Home Affairs that we’d been extremely thorough looking for people locally before they’d consider allowing us to source people from overseas.”

Between October 2022 and March 2023, Western Power’s recruitment team filled some 300 positions with Australian-sourced talent.

“Being able to complement local recruits with interstate and international candidates will continue to be a focus of ours as we source the best talent we can for Western Power,” Ms Smith said.

“At Western Power, we value our employees and are committed to creating a supportive and inclusive workplace where they can grow and develop their skills. This UK recruitment effort is a testament to our commitment to providing our customers with the best network service possible, while also providing our employees with a fulfilling career.

“It’s vital we continue driving local economic growth by unlocking future infrastructure development, employment opportunities and broader regional growth across the State.”

The new recruits, who were provided with assistance obtaining visas and housing, are arriving to start their new lives in WA over the coming months.

“Showcasing Western Australia as an amazing place to live and work, and Western Power as a future focussed employer of choice, was key to the campaign’s success.

“We are delighted to welcome the new lineworkers and cable jointers to our team as we enter a new and exciting period in the future of the energy industry in WA.”

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