Apprentices in Scotland have eight new routes to specialist qualifications thanks to the ongoing work of BSE Skills, the building engineering sector’s leading skills organisation.

The new qualifications are the result of a two-year collaboration between the three BSE Skills members, the Building Engineering Services Association (BESA), SELECT and the plumbing federation SNIPEF.

The eight new pathways have now received approval from the Scottish Qualifications Authority and comprise:

  • SVQ in Electrical Installation
  • SVQ in Plumbing & Heating
  • SVQ in Heating and Ventilating: Ductwork Installation
  • SVQ in Heating and Ventilating: Ductwork Planning and Installation
  • SVQ in Heating and Ventilating: Industrial and Commercial Installation
  • SVQ in Install, Commission and Maintain Air Conditioning Systems
  • SVQ in Install, Commission and Maintain Refrigeration Systems
  • SVQ in Service, Maintain and Commission Building Engineering Services

BSE Skills manages and develops apprenticeships, qualifications and National Occupational Standards for the building services engineering sector across the UK.

Fiona Harper, Director of Employment and Skills at SELECT, said: “We are delighted that our joint venture has achieved another success by gaining approval for these qualifications, which will provide a welcome shot in the arm for skills development in Scotland.”

Fiona Hodgson, Chief Executive of SNIPEF, added: “These are exactly the kind of innovative training approaches that employers have been calling for and will help prepare a new generation of building engineers.

“All three members of BSE Skills look forward to the qualifications being ready for the new intake of apprentices, which is due to start in September.”

Created in 2018 to replace the sector skills body SummitSkills, BSE Skills set an historic precedent as it was the first time trade bodies had received a government commission to carry out such work.

The government-sponsored sector skills council SummitSkills was the managing body until it was disbanded in 2017. Following a four-nation tender process, the central and devolved governments then turned to the three organisations in order to ensure a secure future for vocational training in these crucial specialist sectors.

As member bodies, the trade associations were able to demonstrate close links with employers as well as UK-wide capacity as part of the bidding process and now work with their respective memberships to manage the delivery of a training framework for the whole sector.