Energy & Utility Skills partners with the Fibreoptic Industry Association on telecoms training scheme

Apr 30, 2021 | News (Public)

Energy & Utility Skills announces new partnership with the Fibreoptic Industry Association (FIA).

The Government’s national infrastructure strategy aims to connect 85% of the UK with ultrafast gigabit broadband by 2025, with £1.2bn allocated to the rollout of full-fibre broadband over the next four years. The majority of the population are also due to have access to a 5G signal within 6 years. The fibreoptic industry is crucial to these plans. In recognition of this, the FIA and Energy & Utility Skills have partnered to help ensure the current and future workforce have the skills required to meet these challenges.

In this new collaboration between Energy & Utility Skills and the FIA, those who successfully complete the FIA Qualified Installer scheme will gain an industry recognised qualification which also leads to a  registration on the Energy & Utility Skills Register (EUSR) and access to construction sites with a CSCS partner card.

The FIA’s Technical Qualifications Committee (TQC), which works with providers and industry experts to develop and update qualifications and standards, approached Energy & Utility Skills for its support and expertise in providing a scheme for the industry that could be registered on their EUSR platform.

This partnership is an important step in developing and supporting schemes and programmes within the telecommunications industry.

The TQC were appointed by the FIA to work with the current qualification schemes and update new standards. Where a need is identified to meet the current and future employment needs and industry standards; the TQC work with awarding bodies, service providers and employers to develop and refresh schemes, ensuring the industry is equipped with the correct and desired vocational qualifications.

The scheme is now live, with registration available in these four Level 2 programmes:

  • Qualified Data Cabling Installer
  • Qualified Fibre Optic Installer Inside Plant
  • Qualified Fibre Optic Installer Outside Plant
  • Qualified Network Communications Infrastructure Installer


Each of the programme options contains Energy & Utility Skills’ SHEA Telecommunications scheme, a Safety Health and Environmental Awareness scheme developed in collaboration with the telecoms industry to provide training in line with Health and Safety Executive guidelines. This results in access to construction sites via a CSCS partner card.

As part of the delivery of the scheme, training providers will need to be approved by the FIA directly and Energy & Utility Skills for the SHEA Telecoms scheme.

John Marson, the Fibreoptic Industry Association Chairman, said: “This collaboration is hugely exciting for the FIA as one of our original aims, when incorporated in 1990, was to facilitate development and professionalism within the industry. One continuing focus since then has been to ensure quality and reliability on network design, installation practice and methods of training.

Our FIA approved training providers deliver high quality training and our accredited installers promote best practices in the industry. We’re looking forward to working with Energy & Utility Skills and are confident that our members can register their Installation personnel in the coming months.”

Phil Beach CBE, Energy & Utility Skills Chief Executive, said: “In this fast-growing and exciting industry, we are delighted to have partnered with the Fibreoptic Industry Association on this scheme. The FIA shares our commitment to ensuring all members of the telecommunications industry can demonstrate the required knowledge and understanding to work safely in an operational environment. A competent and skilled workforce is essential to delivering on the Government’s infrastructure plans.”

To find out more about the scheme and the four training programmes, visit the EUSR website.