Thriving in difficult times

Terry Sharp reports on some good news from Q1 and explains why there has never been a better time for engineers to improve their skill set.

“Strike while the iron is hot” as the old saying goes. That certainly seems to be the case at the moment if you want to maximise your career potential in the building controls industry. The BCIA Marketing Group recently reviewed member turnover figures for Quarter 1 of 2021. This period showed the highest ever turnover and evidence to celebrate the buoyancy of the market. Despite supply issues (attributed to Brexit, Suez Canal blockage and Covid) the construction and retrofit marketplace for controls and Building Management Systems (BMS) is at an all time high. What would it be like without the supply shortages?! The construction industry has shown no sign of slowing during lockdown and this is evidenced in today’s record business levels. So what better time to begin or advance your career in the sector?

The electrotechnical industry is a competitive environment and possessing detailed knowledge on the full range of building controls technology is a huge advantage for professionals looking to stand out amongst the crowd. If you have successfully completed the BCIA modules BCM01-03 you may consider going a few steps further to qualify for an Advanced Technical Certificate by completing courses BCM04-BCM06. This qualification provides engineers with an opportunity to prove to clients and employers their full understanding of the six building controls subjects which cover Fundamentals of HVAC & Building Technology, Measuring & Control Technology, Hydraulics in Building Systems, Control Function in Heating Plant, Control of Ventilation and Air Conditioning Plant and Control of Cooling Systems.

For those looking to gain a detailed overview of all types of heating plant and systems together with the associated control applications, BCM04 – Control Function in Heating Plant  is an advanced course for those who have a good level of knowledge and a recommended minimum of two years’ experience within the industry.

BCM05 – Control of Ventilation and Air Conditioning Plant is designed for those responsible for the design, installation and commissioning of building control technologies and systems for ventilation and air conditioning. This advanced course builds on the knowledge gained in the BCM01-BCM04 courses.

BCM06 – Control of Cooling Systems is a detailed, theory-based course relating to refrigeration and psychometrics, focusing on how the refrigeration process operates. This is an advanced course for those who have a good level of knowledge and a recommended minimum of two years’ experience within the industry.

With the BCIA making 2021 its year of training, and also celebrating its 30th anniversary, there is no better time to start out in the industry or improve your status within it. The levels of knowledge to be gained from the BCIA’s full suite of courses, whether it’s a basic understanding or technical detail you’re looking for, will open up new career avenues in an industry that continues to evolve and as shown by the figures in Quarter 1, an industry that continues to thrive in difficult times.