SgurrEnergy Supports Women in Renewables Sector
SgurrEnergy has joined ranks with Women in Renewable Energy Scotland (WiRES) to help promote and support the professional development of women in the renewables sector.
As the first energy corporate sponsor, SgurrEnergy will work with WiRES across its network of activities to support the organisation in its goal to inform, educate and encourage women in the renewable energy sector. Some of the initiatives run by WiRES include networking events, an industry mentoring programme and learning seminars for its members.
Being at the heart of renewable energy growth implies promising prospects for Scotland, but already, employers report that personnel shortages pose a barrier to the development of the industry. Available data suggests that women are significantly underrepresented in the renewable energy sector and this is something that WiRES aims to improve.
Industry body, Scottish Renewables, announced findings from an independent research survey earlier this year of more than 540 companies, revealing that only 28% of the 11,695 people employed in the industry are female. The research did not include an occupational analysis by gender which would have revealed the types of jobs women are doing in the renewables sector. Research by Energy and Utility Skills suggests that the majority of the female workforce tend to work in support roles such as administration and IMechE suggests that only 7% of engineers in the UK are women.
Of SgurrEnergy’s 200 staff, just over a quarter are female, and the roles that they have within the organisation range from engineers, renewable energy consultants and business support staff at varying levels of seniority.
Ian Irvine, technical director at SgurrEnergy, said: “As a growing Scottish business, we are committed to the support and development of our staff in an industry that is developing and changing rapidly. Our business supports employee well-being through a number of schemes and we’re delighted to include WiRES in this group and to be the first of the organisations corporate members.
We are looking forward to working together with WiRES to continue the support of our female staff and to encourage personal and professional development in the renewable energy industry.”
Gail Watt, Chair of the WiRES steering group, said: “Supporting women’s participation in renewable energy is key to the growth of the sector, and SgurrEnergy demonstrates leadership by showing their commitment to WiRES and a diverse workforce. With SgurrEnergy’s help we can offer more events and support more women in their careers in the renewable energy sector.”
Press Release, April 30, 2014; Image: sgurrenergy