SEC logo

SEC Energy Jobs and Skills Forum

Held on 29 June 2023, our Energy Jobs and Skills forum brought together more than 300 experts including the renewable energy industry, workers, Traditional Owner groups, employers, TAFEs, universities, technical schools, training providers and peak bodies – to help shape Victoria’s renewable energy workforce.

What we heard on the day



Workforce demand is uncoordinated across the sector, creating uncertainty.

Greater collaboration between industry and government is needed to map and sequence the forward pipeline of projects to manage workforce impacts.

  • Developers plan projects in isolation. This can create a ‘stop-and-start’ industry that is unattractive for workers.
  • A lack of coordination also makes it more likely employers will need to compete for workers both within and beyond the industry.


Collaborative workforce planning could help ‘smooth’ workforce demand.

  • Greater collaboration between industry and government is needed to map and sequence the forward pipeline of projects to manage workforce impacts.



Projects tend to be in regional areas with added workforce challenges.

  • Regional populations are smaller, so it is harder to find the workers and skills needed.
  • It is hard to hire from outside regions.
  • Commutes are long and people do not want to move.
  • Some regions may face added liveability challenges such as housing shortages.


Workforce planning and place-based development can mitigate barriers.

  • Workforce planning can spread workers across projects and attract community investment.
  • Employers and training providers can skill local workers to match their needs.
  • Investments in local infrastructure and revitalisation may also help attraction.

Attraction and retention


The sector currently struggles to attract and retain the workers it needs.

  • People have less awareness of renewable roles and pathways, including students.
  • Attracting workers depends on offering competitive conditions, including stability, support for career progression and wages.
  • The sector can do more to engage diverse cohorts and women.


The sector can work to build its profile, reputation and attractive roles.

  • Offering work experience and immersive school programs can help attract students.
  • Employers could invest further in what makes roles attractive, including connection to purpose, competitive conditions and ongoing career development.
  • Inclusion needs to be embedded, supported by targets, flexible working policies and leadership.



Training and skills offerings need to be responsive to market needs.

  • Not enough people are enrolling in the qualifications the sector needs.
  • The sector requires flexible training to specialise and build on base skills like engineering, and support mid-career transition.
  • Training will need to rapidly adapt as new technologies emerge.


Schooling and training work best when they are immersive, flexible and industry-informed.

  • Clarifying pathways from school to the workforce, including transferable options, will support enrolments and mobility of students.
  • Providing real-world industry experiences will build student interest and skills.
  • The TAFE and training system will need to invest in the latest facilities and capabilities.
  • A culture of continuous learning will also help the sector to navigate changes and retain an engaged workforce.

Outcomes from the forum will help shape the Victorian Government’s first-of-its-kind Victorian Energy Jobs Plan, ensuring Victoria’s workforce meets the needs of our energy transition and investments.

The plan will prioritise practical actions to address gaps and workforce shortfalls, and position Victoria as a renewable energy workforce leader.

Post-event report

Our post-event wrap-up report captures the key discussion points and insights that participants raised on the day.

Latest news:

We’re taking the guesswork out of going electric

The SEC is calling for volunteers to test a new digital planner to help households go electric.

My Efficient Electric Home founder gives top tips for saving money this winter

'Victorians could save a fortune if they turned off their gas heating and used reverse-cycle air conditioners to heat their homes instead' says energy expert Tim Forcey

Renewable investment leader Simon Corbell to chair SEC board

The Victorian Government has announced the appointment of our independent board of directors, chaired by renewable energy industry leader Simon Corbell.

Sparky adds value to his business with a solar qualification from TAFE

Joe Gauci was 16 when he joined the original SEC as an apprentice electrician in the Latrobe Valley.

Happy outcome for Victorian sparky who helps people electrify and save money

Mornington Peninsula business owner Trent Jones has seen vast changes in his industry since starting out as an electrician 18 years ago.

From devastation comes hope – and a new, energy-efficient school

It’s not only reduced energy bills but also made the whole school more comfortable.

All-electric homes open up a world of diverse career opportunities

“It feels good to be part of an industry that’s part of the solution. To know we are contributing in a small way to something that is so much bigger than us.”

Electrical apprenticeship sparks a career in solar for Madi

“Solar is such a growing industry, and I feel like it’s going to be the way of the future”

Switching to electric means sustainability and comfort

Meet Matt from Ballarat, who slashed his annual gas bill by $1,500 after switching to electric heating.

Efficiency retrofit saves thousands in energy bills

Energy efficiency consultant Richard and his wife took a staged approach when they began retrofitting their home.

Engineering student discovers a career in renewables and doesn’t look back

Su-Yong Oh hadn’t considered a career in renewable energy until he began working as a project control assistant on the Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub.

SEC invests in one of the world’s biggest battery projects

We’re investing $245 million in the Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub (MREH), a major milestone in our plans to deliver renewable, affordable and reliable energy for all Victorians.

SEC strategic plan to accelerate Victoria's renewable energy transition

The new SEC will put power back in the hands of Victorians by investing in renewable energy generation and storage, supporting households to go all-electric, and building the renewable energy workforce we need to drive Victoria’s energy transition.

Developing the renewable energy workforce of the future

The SEC Energy Jobs and Skills Forum welcomed more than 300 industry and community leaders to share insights to help inform the SEC Centre of Training Excellence and the Victorian Energy Jobs Plan.

Energy upgrades deliver a feel-good bonus

When Claire and her wife began upgrades to reduce their power bills, they discovered other unexpected advantages.

Students consider renewables careers at Gippsland energy summit

Helping the environment and their communities are key motivators for these young Gippsland students considering a career in renewable energy.