Where Are All the Female Heating Engineers?

Female Heating Engineers

The UK is facing a serious heating engineer shortage with many engineers reaching retirement age and few replacements. The industry is crying out for people to train and it would be great if more women could take up this career opportunity. However, the trade industry is a male dominated one and there are many myths around the role that can put women off.

A common myth is that to be a heating engineer you need to be physically strong and not afraid of getting your hands dirty. This couldn’t be further from the truth; whilst some aspects of the job are physical, there is also a high level of intelligence, knowledge and continued training required to do the job well. Besides this there are plenty of other things you need to be able to do such as problem solving, customer service and creative thinking.

Despite the barriers, women can still become female heating and gas engineers. There are plenty of reasons to do so; it offers great flexibility, you can work as self employed and you have the option of running your own business in the future. It is also very lucrative with a wage of between £20-£30 per hour plus the potential to make a lot more through additional income streams such as maintenance contracts, gas safety certificates and servicing/installation of boilers and gas fires.

Where Are All the Female Heating Engineers?

Retraining as an adult is a big step for anyone, regardless of their gender. People have bills, mortgages and rent to pay as well as families and households to run so it can be hard to find the time and money for the necessary training. For many, the only way to do this is by taking up a rare apprenticeship where you can earn while you learn. However, the competition for these is extremely high so it can be difficult to get a position.

Another myth is that women aren’t as good at STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). This again is not the case; studies have shown that girls often outperform boys in these subject areas at GCSE level. Unfortunately, this does not always continue into their A-Levels and university education which leads to a gender imbalance in the engineering workforce.

In addition to this, the general public seems to be more open to female tradespeople than you might think. In fact, 2/3rds of the general public say they wouldn’t mind a female tradesperson coming into their home and over half would actively like to support women working in non-traditional roles.

So, what are you waiting for? Why not give it a go and help break down the barriers for more women in this rewarding and lucrative career? You never know, you might just love it! To find out more about how you can train to become a heating engineer, visit the website of our merchant partner, Wolseley. They have a range of courses available including full-time and part-time apprenticeships. Alternatively, if you want to talk to someone about your options, get in touch with the team on 0800 917 8847.

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