Eraring Power Station operators receive nationally recognised certificates

Eraring Energy has provided operators at the coal-fired Eraring Power Station with a Certificate III and IV in Generation Training.

Eraring Energy, which was purchased by Origin Energy from the New South Wales Government in 2013, is the first electricity generation company in Australia to modify the certificate programs to better reflect the needs of employees under the National Qualification Framework. As part of the process, recognition of prior learning and desktop audits were introduced to the curriculum.

Eraring Energy’s executive human resources manager Phil Moriarty said the program tied in with the company’s people-first strategy.

“At Origin, there is a strong focus on safety, leadership and the development of our people, so it was important to be able to align our internal operator training to the national framework,” he said.

Of the 70 staff employed by Eraring Energy, 69 took part in the training program, including long-serving staff.

The training proposal was established through a joint partnership with E-Oz Energy Skills Australia, the New South Wales Utilities and Electrotechnology Industry Training Advisory Board, and Yokogawa Australia – an industrial automation and instrumentation company.

Eraring Energy’s learning and development manager Colleen West said the professional development opportunity has had a positive impact in the workplace.

“The training was happening anyway, now people are being recognised for it and there has been significant value to Eraring and our employees,” she said.

“There is a lot of planning, persistence and patience required, but it has been very worthwhile and I would encourage like-minded organisations to undertake the same exercise.”

The feedback from graduates has been positive, with several employees acknowledging the nationally recognised qualification will boost future job prospects.

Eraring Energy plans to continue the program into other business units within the organisation.