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This week our guest blogger is CQI CEO Simon Feary.

As is the case with CQI’s members, I am sure members of IIRSM will have noticed the growing interdependencies and grouping of risk, safety and quality management, as systems within workplaces become more integrated. This is particularly true of the nuclear industry where quality management, health safety and risk management are front and centre and work together directly.

New research commissioned by the CQI on quality skills in the nuclear sector however has shown that by 2015, there will be a critical shortage of skilled quality professionals in the nuclear industry, unless urgent measures are put in place now.

The CQI’s research estimates that 1,200 –1,700 quality professionals will be required by 2021, however the trigger points for skills shortages will come much sooner. The convergence of the new build and decommissioning programmes mean that the potential to transfer quality employees across from old sites to new ones will be limited and that the age profile of quality professionals in the sector is higher than the average for the nuclear sector. Both factors will contribute to a peak shortage in just three years’ time, threatening the plans for simultaneous decommissioning and new build projects.

As the average training period for a quality professional is two years, we are urging the industry’s skills and regulatory bodies, and employers, to take urgent action to ensure that appropriate training programmes are put in place now. The CQI is also calling for better monitoring and separate categorisation of quality professionals in the sector by the skills bodies.

You can download the CQI’s full report

Simon Feary, CQI CEO

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