The Leader of the Year award was established by EHRC in 2013 to recognize and celebrate an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to their organization within the Canadian electricity industry through visionary people management strategies and leadership. This year’s event sponsors included: The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO),The Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO),Alectra, Ontario Power Generation, Women in Renewable Energy (WiRE), Power Workers Union, Hydro Ottawa, The Canadian Union of Skilled Workers (CUSA), The Society of Energy Professionals and media partner, Kerrwil Publications.
“We are delighted to recognize Mike Allen as this year’s recipient. As the leader of a critical initiative, OPG’s Darlington Refurbishment, he understands and demonstrates how important people are to the outcome of a successful project,” said Jim Kellett, Board Chair, EHRC. “As an inspirational leader, Mike personifies many of our key objectives for this award such as passion, employee development, communications with staff, and motivation.”
Additional 2017 award recipients include:
- Sara Rasouli, Ontario Power Generation – Emerging Leader of the Year Award
- Cambrian College, Innovation in HR Practices Educational/Training Institution Award
- Alberta Electric Systems Operator, Innovation in HR Practices Employer Award
- Ontario Power Generation, Workplace Diversity & Inclusion Champion Award
The event also featured a special presentation of preliminary findings from EHRC’s 2017 – 2022 Labour Market Information (LMI) Studyfor the Canadian Electricity industry, followed by a panel discussion from employers, education and labour representatives. This body of research aims to provide practical insights to guide the industry’s human resources management and planning, including the most up to date issues and statistics that impact the sector, along with subsequent implications on the skilled labour supply-demand gap. Employers, contractors and educators can still participate in the study by completing EHRC’s LMI survey by March 31, 2018. Further details on how to participate can be found here.
Highlights from EHRC’s preliminary LMI findings and panel discussion:
- Retirement rate in Electricity sector is higher than in others, along with the percentage of workforce that is over 45 years of age. This will lead to new challenges to replace the skillset of these older workers.
- With the emerging role of innovation and technology in the sector, an accelerated demand for cleaner energy, renewables and micro-generation, along with heightened cyber-security concerns, we are seeing a shift in skills’ requirements of the electricity workforce. Organizations will need to find innovative ways to engage, train and upskill for these emerging technologies, while integrating the newly-skilled workforce with existing workers and systems.
- New entrants are increasingly being called up on to possess work aptitude, design thinking and transferable “soft” skills that enable them to leverage technical or “hard’ skills to their fullest potential in the workplace.
- There is a clear need to develop effective outreach strategies to attract new entrants to the sector in particular the younger generation – both to increase awareness of the potential opportunities that innovation brings to the sector and mitigate competition with other industries who will also face increasing supply challenges.