Closing the power and utilities skills gap

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How the industry can overcome one obstacle to recruiting and retaining the right workforce

As many of its workers near retirement age, the power and utilities industry is trying to replenish its workforce. Companies especially need staff with skills in areas of growing importance to the business including data analytics, customer service, automation, robotics and augmented intelligence. The industry faces tough competition for these talents as they are highly sought by many other industries, some with more perceived glamour and cachet than utilities.

But the industry does have important values that appeal to these sought-after and often younger workers. Perhaps one of its greatest challenges is doing a better job of explaining these positive values to recruits.

What employees want from employers

Workers’ perspectives are changing. All employees, including millennials and the upcoming generation Z, have evolving needs and desires when it comes to selecting an employer. In fact, in a PwC survey we found that most want to work for an organization with a “powerful social conscious.”

To the extent the power and utilities industry embodies these qualities, the greater all employees will esteem it — and the more they will want to work in it. How the industry demonstrates both ethics to the millennial audience will be key to its future success.

Graphic source: Workforce of the future: The views of 10,000 workers, PwC, 2017


Top “promotable” power and utility values

While the industry faces some roadblocks in recruiting the most ambitious new talent, it has many qualities millennials and others seek in the workplace, including: At the same time, the industry is imbued with many of the qualities millennials seek in the workplace, including:

  • Being a vital player in wind, solar and other “green” technologies, like electric vehicles
  • Empowering consumers to make their own choices about energy consumption
  • Providing a flexible work environment that fosters work-life integration
  • Demonstrating a commitment to the community through service projects and charity work

Contact us

Karen Brennan-Holton

Principal, Power & Utilities Human Capital Leader, PwC US

Philip McLemore

Director, Advisory, PwC US

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