News, Blog, Employment, Awards, Careers | Friday 23rd October 2020

We’ve called a truce in the ‘war for talent’

Talent shortages in engineering are well-documented and we’re certainly seeing them more and more in the Fire & Security industry.

Employers are fighting over a dwindling pool, as engineers retire or leave the industry with too few entrants attracted and trained to replace them.

It’s led to a salary arms race that ultimately no-one can win, but now we’re helping a select band of employers work together on a sustainable solution.

Introducing Zitko Talent

It’s taken years of planning and hundreds of conversations, but it’s here: a radical industry initiative that’s going to develop thousands of new Fire & Security engineers.

Zitko Talent is an alliance of Fire & Security employers, manufacturers, trainers, educators and trade bodies focused on solving the skills shortage.

Together we’re providing a spectacular launchpad for new industry entrants: 12 months’ paid employment, with training and education personalised to each trainee and employer.

It opens the doors to an engineering career for people from many industries and walks of life; and it provides exactly the skills individual employers need, on a trainee by trainee basis.

Names to conjure with

In the initial phases of the programme we’re working with a tight group of founding partners.

Our employers include Northland Controls, Reliance High Tech, Custom Intelligent Security, Chroma Vision and PAFI Limited.

Skills4Security, Tavcom and the FIA will be providing the 160+ hours of foundation technical training, orientation and awards.

And delivering the product training and certification will be manufacturing partners, including 360 Vision, Secure Logiq, Texecom, Eagle Eye, Suprema.

In other words, we’re rolling out this new industry-wide programme in some illustrious company – and we’re looking forward to welcoming many more partners along the way.

The programme in action

Zitko Talent trainees follow a structured programme combining: paid employment; manufacturer training and certification relevant to their jobs; comprehensive technical education.

Centralised admin and economies of scale mean that together we can resource and train engineers more efficiently, cost effectively and comprehensively than any employer could hope to do alone.

There are course pathways for college leavers, graduates, experienced engineers from other industries and those with exceptional technical aptitude in unrelated careers.

All of which means that we’re casting the net far wider than ever before when it comes to finding tomorrow’s star engineers.

Each partner will be playing to their strengths.

Employers will provide 12 months’ paid work and on-the-job training; manufacturing partners the relevant training and certification; and educators the theoretical foundation.

Zitko, meanwhile, will be promoting the industry and opportunity; attracting and selecting exceptional trainees; and coordinating the entire programme.

Our first trainees

Right now, we’re finalising our first cohort of trainees, who’ll be beginning their programme in November.

The group includes graduates, experienced engineers from mechanical, electrical, electronics and people from aviation industries, who’ve shown extraordinary aptitude during our selection tests.

They’ll begin their journey with a week or so’s induction with their employers, after which they’ll rotate between theoretical study, product training and work experience.

We aim to increase the size of the intakes every quarter in our drive to 1000 trainees a year. The application process is already open for our second cohort.

Zitko’s very excited to be creating these new opportunities, as are our partners. Watch out for further news in the weeks to come.

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