More than 400 new training places are now available for people leaving the oil and gas sector to gain the skills they need to move into other industries.
A further five training providers are offering 425 opportunities to individuals thanks to the Transition Training Fund – the fund established by the Scottish Government to support people affected by redundancies in oil and gas.
The second round of funding for training providers follows an initial round last year, which saw five providers offering more than 330 places.
A wide range of courses will offer people the chance to move into a number of industries such as renewables, construction, decommissioning, road haulage, smart meter insulation and rail.
Scottish Government Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, Paul Wheelhouse, visited Colin Lawson Transport in Aberdeen, a company committed to taking on people who have retrained from the oil and gas industry.
"The North East of Scotland has a highly talented oil and gas workforce with world leading skills that can be utilised in a wide range of different sectors, including renewables, construction, decommissioning and many others. Our Transition Training Fund (TTF) established last year has already supported over 1,500 oil and gas industry workers to retrain, with some having been further supported to start their own business. It is also successfully supporting 12 individuals to transition into Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) teaching within Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire areas to address needs in local schools. The second procurement round of TTF will create over 400 training opportunities across a variety of sectors. It is absolutely crucial that we take every possible action to retain the expertise that the industry has built up over decades.”
Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Government Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy
Aberdeen-based Colin Lawson Transport employs 70 people and has been training drivers for 20 years.
Boss Colin Lawson said: “The haulage industry can offer great careers for the right people with the right skills.
“As a company we recognise the valuable skills people moving from the oil and gas industry can bring.
“We are committed to taking on more people via the Transition Training Fund who have retrained and who have shown their commitment to forging a new career in the haulage industry.”
Craig Harris used the Transition Training Fund to retrain as a driver following redundancy.
Craig, 46, said: “I worked in technical sales in the oil and gas industry.
“Through the Transition Training Fund I’ve gained my class 1 and class 2 vehicles licences.
“I would encourage anyone in a similar position to look at the Transition Training Fund.”
Road Haulage Association Regional Operations Manager, Brian Kenny, said: “The industry as a whole is experiencing a skills shortage. We anticipate that during the the next five years Scotland could face a shortage of up to 25,000 drivers.
“The Transition Training Fund is a warmly welcomed opportunity for our two sectors to work together in addressing their respective skills gaps as well as demonstrating the benefits of working in road haulage.
“It’s clear that demand is there in the road haulage industry across Scotland for people who want to train as drivers.”
Diane Hill of Skills Development Scotland (SDS), who administer the Transition Training Fund on behalf of the Scottish Government, says people affected by redundancies should apply.
Diane said: “The Transition Training Fund aims to help retain the wealth of skills and experience developed by our oil and gas industry and to redeploy it in other sectors.
“This element of the fund allows training providers to help people move into a number of growth areas where there is a demand for skills, and it represents a real opportunity for people affected by redundancy to launch a new career.”
The training places now being made available are one element of the Transition Training Fund, which also gives individuals the chance to apply for support to undertake training that will help them a find a new job.
Training providers delivering the 425 places are:
The increased training places are one element of the Transition Training Fund, which also gives individuals the chance to apply for support to undertake training that will help them a find a new job.
Further information on the fund, along with how to apply is also available at www.transitiontrainingfund.co.uk