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Gathering and sharing vital intelligence on the future of Offshore wind skills

  • Talent Pipeline
  • Industry Engagement
  • GreenPort

“The Skills Study is very important for the sector because it will identify the capabilities challenges and offer the solutions that are required to build and operate the windfarms today and into the future.”

John Weir, Talent Pipeline and business engagement, Aura.

An industry-wide study, commissioned by Aura to identify the skills required by the offshore wind industry in the coming years.


John Weir Talent Pipeline & Industry Engagement

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Project Dates

Start - November 17

End - October 18

A report commissioned on behalf of Aura in 2017 revealed that the offshore wind industry is experiencing exponential growth. Production rose from 1.3GW of energy in 2010 to over 5GW today, and is projected to reach 22GW by the early 2030s.

This means that the number of employees in the industry is likely to double – reaching a total of 21,000. These people  – and their skills – will be a key driver of the industry’s productivity and of the economy of the North East, where the majority of these jobs will be based.

Coordinating the industry’s response

Building on Aura’s employment projection work, a new study was commissioned with funding from Green Port Hull and the Regional Growth Fund. Key industry players – such as employers, skills providers and local enterprise partnerships – were asked for their views on:

• The skills and employment challenges facing the industry today

• The factors that may influence future employment and skills demand, such as technological developments, market growth and evolving linkages and interdependencies between operators, developers and the supply chain

• How to ensure that the sector has the skills it needs in the future

The study was carried out by Energy & Utility Skills – a UK authority on professional development and employment in this sector – overseen by a Reference Group whose members include Humber LEP, Green Port Hull (who are funding the study), Orsted, Aura and Siemens Gamesa.

Sharing intelligence

The intelligence gathered during the study informed a report on the future skills requirements of the industry and identify ways to meet them.  The report demonstrated that the offshore wind industry is growing rapidly and is on its way to becoming a mainstream provider of low-carbon electricity for the country, thereby helping to ensure that the UK meets its climate change targets.  In order to deliver on the ambitions that the industry has set itself, it is going to need many more skilled people to join its workforce. Based on government and industry estimates that installed OSW capacity in the UK could be 35GW, or five-fold its existing levels, by 2032, the study’s main findings include:

•            the requirement for workers is set to increase from 10,000 today to 36,000 by 2032;

•            the OSW sector will be operating in a very tight labour market over the coming years and there will be fierce competition for talent;

•            skills shortages could become more prevalent and the industry is going to need a wide range of skills sets – from asset management, leadership, engineering and scientists through to the softer skills such as team working and problem solving;

•            the industry needs to work with the educational system now to ensure that the right skills and talents come through the system at all levels over the coming years – from schools and apprenticeships to higher education and continual professional development for those already well along in their careers;

•            many of the job opportunities will be focused on the East Coast of the UK where the wind farms are located.

Aura director, Ben George, said on publication of the report: “The offshore wind industry is a fundamental part of the UK’s low-carbon future.  The IPCC report, published in early October, emphasised how little time we have to change the way we, as a society, consume energy.  The findings from the EU Skills Study show how crucial it is that we bring the best talent into this industry which is full of opportunities for those who want to be a part of the clean growth energy ‘ecolution’ and a sustainable future for all.”

PDF copies of the Summary Study report and the Full Study report are available on the Aura website:

Summary report:

Full report:

For more information, please contact Aura on 01482 465487.