Chapter 6: Skills and Supply Chain
The rollout of Energy Efficient Scotland has the potential to create a substantial Scottish market and supply chain for energy efficiency services and technologies, with every £100 million spent on energy efficiency improvements in 2018 estimated to support approximately 1,200 full-time equivalent jobs across the Scottish economy  . As part of our overall commitment to the Programme we will be working to provide support and actively promote the opportunities of this market.
As well as making sure Scottish companies can benefit from the opportunities, we need to ensure that the quality of the work carried out by the supply chain is of a high standard and that installers are suitably qualified.
We know that activity in the skills and supply chain needs to be increased in the transition phase and beyond. We already have an existing energy efficiency skills base and people and businesses in place to perform energy efficiency work. However, we want to ensure that as the Programme expands they are able to capture the new opportunities and that these opportunities are available to our SMEs as well as our larger businesses.
Because of the close connection between quality assurance, consumer protection and the skills and supply chain, we are considering these issues in the round through the work being undertaken by the Short Life Working Group on Quality Assurance, Consumer Protection, Skills and Supply Chain.
The Group has representatives from across industry, consumer organisations, and enterprise and skills agencies, and is considering:
- The current capacity and capability within the supply chain and whether or not it is likely to meet the demand for the Programme.
- How best to keep the supply chain informed of the work and training opportunities available through the Programme during and after the transition period.
- How best to provide clarity on the quality assurance and consumer standards expected from supply chain participants as part of the the Programme delivery framework.
- How to assess and address the barriers that industries, both small and large scale, face in successfully participating in the Programme.
- How best to promote skills and training opportunities for the supply chain.
- How we can best help the energy efficiency industry overcome inefficiencies and keep their costs low, making participation in the Programme financially viable.
- How we can best promote the opportunities available to small and medium enterprises ( SMEs) throughout Scotland and help ensure that participating in the Programme is financially viable for them.
- How best to include industry and support them through the Programme transition period and beyond.
As a first stage to inform the Short Life Working Group, we are looking at our existing supply chain to determine the current capacity and capability. We have undertaken the following research:
- A Home Energy Efficiency Programme – Area Based Scheme ( HEEPS: ABS) – Lessons Learned report for the Development of the Programme. This will help us ascertain areas for improvement in procurement that would help SMEs to compete and participate in the Programme.
- An Energy Efficiency and Low Carbon Market Research report was produced in October 2017  , identifying:
- What the likely future demand is from key buyers in Scotland.
- What the current supply chain characteristics are in Scotland.
- Insights to assess the supply chain’s ability to respond to the tenders to be issued as part of the Programme.
- Barriers and gaps in the supply chain’s ability to meet the needs of buyers.
- Recommendations and feedback for the Scottish Government and partners.
We have also commissioned work specifically relating to the supply chain and its requirements under the Programme, including:
- looking at raising industry awareness of the Programme
- obtaining details of current market knowledge of the scheme
- providing customer service training and behavioural advice to the supply chain
- collating a bespoke communications plan specifically relating to the supply chain industry.
This work is on-going and we intend to publish further details of how we will assist and support the supply chain by the end of 2018.
Scottish Enterprise has recently commissioned fore sighting work to identify Scottish capability and capacity, prior to developing a Scottish supply chain programme to support Energy Efficient Scotland and to help develop a strategic approach to maximising the associated economic benefits for industry.
The actions and recommendations from our research and the findings from the Working Group will be used to develop the specific skills, quality assurance and consumer protection outcomes that are required to be incorporated into the Programme.
Progress And Next Steps
The development of the Programme Quality Assurance framework began in early 2018 and will
continue throughout the transition phase in order to be operational in 2020.
SLWG will meet during 2018.
A set of actions will be taken forward that will ensure the framework meets the principles set out.