CPD Frequently Asked QuestionsThese FAQs will be regularly added to and kept up to date. Please check back for the latest information.
Continuing Professional Development is how the knowledge, skills, and competence of electrical licence holders are maintained, improved, broadened, and enhanced.
It is the result of a legislative commitment by the State Government and fully supported by Unions and Employer Groups.
It will include two components, known as Skills Maintenance (available in mid-2022) and Skills Development (available in 2023).
Skills Maintenance is delivered via up to eight hours of in-classroom training, delivered by professional training organisations under the guidance of Energy Safe Victoria. Licensed electrical workers must normally complete eight hours of specific training for each licence they hold.
Skills Development training requirements are still being developed.
Keeping your current skills up to date, refreshed and improved to fit current industry requirements and improve safety for workers and the community.
The development or enhancement of knowledge and skills in areas of interest relevant to the electrical trade.
Once an electrical licence is obtained, it must be renewed every five years with the payment of a fee. But historically no mandatory ongoing training has been required, or any proof of ongoing competence.
As every electrical worker understands, there are constant changes in the field, including updated Standards and Regulations, improved safety practices, and new technologies.
Accordingly, the Government, Unions and Employers have determined that there is a risk that changes and updates are not being effectively relayed to electrical workers because there are no ongoing training requirements.
Research has also shown that licence holders may not be aware of revisions to standards or may have forgotten the mandatory testing requirements contained in legislation.
In addition, poor work practices can lead to death, injuries, and fires affecting both electrical workers and their customers.
CPD will enable workers’ knowledge and skills to stay current and relevant, reduce complacency, and improve safety outcomes.
Yes. An industry committee oversees the introduction of CPD. This committee includes Energy Safe Victoria (ESV), the Electrical Trades Union (ETU), the National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA), the Institute of Electrical Inspectors (IEI), and training experts.
The course content is created by Future Energy Skills. Future Energy Skills is a not-for-profit organisation led by the Electrical Trades Union (ETU) and National Electrical Communications Association (NECA) to work in partnership with the electrotechnology, renewable, new energy and the electricity generation and supply sectors, collaborating with key stakeholders within industry and the vocational education sector to provide training, assessment, and consultation services.
Whilst CPD is new for the electrical industry, it’s a very common component of any professional industry. Its introduction now reflects the very high safety and regulatory standards required by our modern industry.
CPD is organised and administered by Energy Safe Victoria, and delivered by professional trainers, supervised and aided by a wide range of industry bodies.
The CPD Skills Maintenance course covers safe isolation, mandatory testing, industry changes, and the responsibilities of licensed workers. The content will be regularly updated to ensure it is useful and current.
For Skills Development, a wide range of courses are being considered to take into account industry changes.
Electricians, Electrical Inspectors, and Supervised (ES) licence holders will be required to complete both Skills Maintenance and Skills Development training.
Restricted electrical licence holders and Switchgear licence holders are required to complete Skills Maintenance training only. Line Worker CPD is still under consideration.
Supervised (L) licence holders will not be required to undertake CPD, as they do not renew licences, and must make an application for a new licence upon expiry. Occupiers licence holders will not be required to undertake CPD.
The skills maintenance course must be completed in the two years before your licence renewal, and it will apply to those renewing their licences from 1 July 2023.
You must have completed the skills maintenance course to be eligible to renew your licence, and carrying out electrical work without a current licence is strictly illegal and subject to substantial penalties.
There is no requirement to ‘pass’ an exam at the end of your CPD course to be able to renew your licence.
It is not ESV’s intention to refuse a licence based on outcomes of this course. However you may be advised by your trainer if you have any area of particular weakness where you should seek remedial training. ESV will not be advised of this.
Feedback from participants in the pilot sessions of the course show that people find it enjoyable, useful, and not ‘scary’ at all.
I hold more than one licence type (Electrician and LEI). Must I complete separate courses for each licence type?
Yes, anyone who holds multiple licence classes will need to complete a course for each type of licence class they hold. The courses have been constructed to ensure little to no duplication of course material.
All technical nominees must hold a valid electrical worker’s licence (for example, an electrician’s licence) and CPD must be completed for this licence. However there are no additional requirements specifically for technical nominees.
ESV will recognise interstate CPD requirements if they are consistent with that required by ESV. ESV will continue to monitor interstate CPD requirements in regard to this. Currently, no other state has a similar/equivalent CPD program. Contact us for further advice by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If I hold two licences, e.g. Queensland and Victoria, and I've lived in Queensland for five-plus years, do I need to complete Victorian CPD to keep my Victorian licence?
Yes, unless the interstate CPD is deemed equivalent. However, there is currently no equivalent interstate CPD.
Training will be available in a range of major regional centres.
No. You are encouraged to bring food with you, or most locations have catering facilities nearby that you can access.
Will ESV send out notifications to licence holders, to remind us that we need to complete the training?
Yes. Multiple communications will be sent out to all licence holders for them to complete their CPD in a timely manner.
However, in order for ESV to communicate with you, you must have your current details stored in ESV Connect.
ESVConnect is the primary system for online regulation of the electrical industry in Victoria – licensing, COES and registration of cathodic protection systems. All licence applications, renewals of electrical licences and electrical contractor registrations must be made on ESVConnect. To find out more head to esv.vic.gov.au/esvconnect/.
This is a legal requirement of holding your licence.
If you are not registered with ESV Connect, or your details are not current, this will not be an excuse for not attending CPD, and your licence renewal will be put at risk.
If you work without a current licence you are breaking the law and serious penalties apply.
No, and there is also no planned exemption for CPD based on age. Whatever age you are, if you wish to renew a licence you must be registered with ESV Connect, and you must complete CPD.
I need to meet CPD requirements for other certifications. Will these be recognised so I don't have to do the same thing twice?
Wherever possible ESV will consider training by other providers for the skills development component of CPD. Contact us for further advice by emailing us at email@example.com.
Ongoing. You will need to complete the Skills Maintenance course once every five years, and also meet the Skills Development requirement every time you renew (once this course is established).
In the first renewal cycle (which is July 2023-June 2028, inclusive) you will only be required to complete the Skills Maintenance course. In the second and subsequent renewal cycles (that is to say from July 2028 onwards) you will need to do both.
Given its increasing significance, it is intended that solar systems training will be a CPD skills development option.
What happens to people who don't work in the field anymore such as supervisors and engineers who require their licence for their position, but who haven't lodged a certificate for many years? Will they still need to undertake the Skills Maintenance and Skills Development courses?
If they wish to renew their licence and work legally, then yes. Without having attended CPD they will not be able to renew their licence.
The Skills Maintenance course was successfully trialled in March 2022. Participation in the trial ‘counts’ as attending the training. The course will be available for all in mid-2022. Details on CPD availability are constantly being updated on the ESV website or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for any clarification you need.
Up to eight hours per licence class held, taking place in a professional training facility. The content will be approximately 60% ‘hands on’ practical learning and 40% theory.
This is an employment matter between individual licence holders and their employer. ESV encourages employers to release staff for CPD, but that is a matter between employer and employee. ESV understands that leave to attend the training may have been included in some Enterprise Bargaining Agreements (EBA), and you should consult your trades union, check your EBA for further details, or speak directly to your employer, as appropriate.
Courses will also be available during evenings and weekends for anyone unable to attend the course during business hours.
The State Government has committed that no licence holder will need to pay for their course for the first round of licence renewals.
Professional training providers across metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria have been selected to deliver the courses to a high quality standard, under industry guidance.
Does my employer get to decide which training provider’s course I need to attend? What if I prefer to attend a course offered by another provider? Who gets the final say?
A number of highly qualified authorised training providers are delivering the course. Whichever training provider you attend, you will receive the same training, so from ESV’s perspective it doesn’t matter which provider you choose. ESV’s preference is for you to access CPD through the provider that is the most convenient for you to attend.
What happens to my licence if I am not able to undertake the training in the two years prior to my renewal?
Completion of the training is a requirement for licence renewal. However, in certain circumstances ESV may consider an extension of time for individuals to complete the course. ESV is currently developing a policy that will provide further information on exemptions and extensions, which will be posted on the ESV website when complete
What if I have an issue with the training provider? Where can I lodge a complaint or provide feedback?
All training providers have a complaints and feedback process, and in the first instance you should submit any complaints or feedback to the training provider. There will also be an opportunity for feedback within the questionnaire at the end of the course. If your training provider is unable to satisfy your complaint, the matter should be escalated to ESV.
If you are registered with ESV Connect you will receive a courtesy letter two years before your licence renewal falls due. This letter will contain your personalised course information.
When you wish to attend CPD, contact your preferred training provider, and follow their processes to enrol. You will need to show your current licence card to prove your eligibility for the course, and to ensure you are enrolled into the correct course for your licence type.