Continuing Professional Development
CPD is coming soon
ESV will shortly introduce Victoria’s first program of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for the electrical trade.
In the near future, it will become necessary for most classes of electrical licence holders to attend an eight hour CPD training session, as a condition of their licence renewal.
The training will be specific to every class of licence, and will be mandatory for every electrical licence held. Sessions will be held at selected training centres at various locations across Victoria.
It is hoped to run a pilot of the training in early March 2022, and then roll out the whole program to the rest of the industry in 2022/3, incorporating findings from the pilot.
CPD is an exciting opportunity for all licence holders to enhance their skills and preserve the industry’s high levels of professionalism, bolstering the trade against rogue operators.
It will also strengthen the incentive for Victorians to only deal with appropriately qualified licence holders, and in doing so, it will keep the community safer.
More information will be provided on a regular basis.
What is CPD?
Continuing Professional Development, or CPD, is the means by which electrical licence holders can maintain, improve, broaden and enhance their knowledge, skills, and competence. It will take place using professionally prepared materials in a classroom environment, at carefully chosen locations in regional and metropolitan Victoria. Each eight-hour session will comprise roughly 60% hands on training.
People work hard to achieve their licence to operate in the electrical industry, and CPD supports electrical workers to both protect and enhance their licence.
Why is CPD being introduced?
To keep Victorians safer, by ensuring the highest possible standards in our electrical services industry.
The industry is technically complex, sometimes hazardous and subject to regulatory changes. It’s also a rapidly changing industry, which requires electrical workers to stay up to date with the latest regulations and ongoing technological advancements.
CPD will help keep everyone safer, and it is supported by the Government, unions, employers, and the general community.
Many industries use a form of continuing professional development to ensure participants are thoroughly capable of performing their jobs and kept up to date about regulatory change or technological advances. It is common in both trades environments and professional environments such as teaching and the legal profession.
Every effort will be made to ensure that every licence holder is fully aware of their requirement to complete CPD, and given a timely opportunity to do so.
What does CPD address? Answer: the ‘Three Cs”
CPD addresses the ‘Three Cs’ – Currency, Competency fade and Complacency.
Electrical trades experience regular updates in standards and regulations, advances in technologies, and strict safety requirements. Currency – how up to date everyone is – and Competency – how well we all do our jobs – are therefore critically important.
The last ‘C’ – Complacency – is one of the leading causes of workplace accidents according to WorkSafe Victoria, and in worst-case scenarios, it can cost lives.
No matter how experienced we are, we cannot afford to lapse into complacency, especially in this safety critical industry. And with new workplace manslaughter laws introduced in July last year, no business or individual can afford to fall behind in their safe work practices.
Electrical tradespeople work in a regulated industry, and as such, are now required to maintain and develop their professional skills to continue to work in the trade.
Who is developing the training content?
Under the guidance of ESV and industry, training content will be created by Future Energy Skills (FES), and then delivered by specialist training organisations who are yet to be selected.
Future Energy Skills is a not-for-profit organisation led by the Electrical Trades Union (ETU) and National Electrical Communications Association (NECA) to serve and work in partnership with the electro-technology, renewable, new energy and the electricity generation and supply sectors. FES collaborates with key stakeholders within industry and the vocational education sector to provide training, assessment, and consultation services.
When will CPD be introduced?
ESV will introduce CPD in stages over several years. The program essentially contains two parts – Skills Maintenance, which could be viewed as “refresher” training, and Skills Development. This second phase of training will develop and expand on licence holders’ knowledge and skills in new or emerging areas of interest relevant to the electrical trade.
- Skills Maintenance training will be developed for and trialled in the pilot program prior to the general roll out.
- The Skills Maintenance component will be required for electrical licence renewals from 2023 and for lineworker licence renewals from 2026.
- Following the roll-out of the Skills Maintenance program, the Skills Development program will be introduced.
Electrical workers in some licence classes will need to complete CPD training for both Skills Maintenance and Skills Development in order to renew their licence from 2028.
CPD for Licensed Electrical Workers (LEWs)
|CPD for LEWs||Training available from||Required for renewals from|
Note: licence renewals from 2028 will require the completion of skills maintenance AND skills development, if applicable to the licence class.
CPD for Lineworkers
|CPD for lineworkers||Training available from||Required for renewals from|
Which licence types need to complete CPD?
Electrical workers in the following licence classes will be required to undertake CPD.
|Licence type||Skills Maintenance||Skills Development|
|Electrician (Supervised) (ES)||✓||✓|
|Restricted Electrical Licence||✓||✕|
CPD is in two phases
If you hold a licence before the starting date of the program you will have one full licence cycle where you only need to complete Skills Maintenance. You must then complete Skills Development training in the second licence renewal cycle. All training must be completed prior to your licence renewal date.
Training that counts towards Skills Development can be done at any time in the 5 years prior to licence renewal.
For example: ‘Joe’ is due to renew his electricians licence on 25th July 2024. To renew, he must have completed his Skills Maintenance training in the two years before his licence is due to be renewed. In other words, he must have undertaken the Skills Maintenance course between 25th July 2022 and 24th July 2024.
Once Joe has renewed in 2024, in his next licence cycle he will need to do both Skills Maintenance and Skills Development.
Joe’s next renewal date will be 25th July 2029. He will need to complete Skills Maintenance within the two years prior, i.e. between 25th July 2027 and 24th July 2029. His Skills Development training can be completed at any time in the 5 year cycle – between 25th July 2024 and 24th July 2029.
Has industry been consulted?
Yes. Extensive industry, stakeholder and public consultation was held in 2020, prior to the CPD requirements being introduced into legislation.
A CPD Industry Steering Committee comprising Union, Employer, Training professionals, and ESV was formed in October 2020 to oversee the principles, direction, and governance of the program. Working groups, made up of industry and education subject matter experts, have been formed in 2021 to oversee the training content development, and a skilled and experienced content provider – FES – was selected. Industry consultation has been an important part of the development of high quality, relevant and engaging training materials.
FES were chosen based on their proven project delivery and resource development experience, having recently delivered the New Energy Technology Systems (NETS) project. FES is also currently developing the Solar Victoria sponsored Electrical Inspection training project and offer an excellent network and strong working partnerships with industry leaders and subject matter experts.
Will it be easy to find a training location?
Yes. Training will be provided in a variety of locations across Melbourne and Regional Victoria. Training venues will be announced later in 2021.
Follow our CPD updates
ESV will update the progress of CPD via this webpage and direct contact with licence holders. Updates will also be communicated through EnergySafe Magazine, and ESV’s social media channels. To stay informed, please follow us via the links below:
Read ESV’s CPD Policy For Licensed Electrical Workers.