How is the APHC and BREC Partnership Changing the Training Scene of the Plumbing Industry

UK Plumbing Industry Background

In the UK, research has suggested that the plumbing, heating, and air conditioning installation industry generates approximately £16 billion in revenue and employs 149,098 individuals among 36,800 businesses. This year the industry is said to grow at a compound annual rate of 0.8%. It’s safe to say that this multibillion-pound sector is a big deal.

The APHC and BREC Partnership

In 2018, it was reported that the Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors (APHC) and British Plumbing Employers Council (BPEC) would join forces to establish a partnership. The purpose of this merger involves developing qualifications, courses, learning materials, and overall raising the standards across the industry. Both the APHC and BPEC are leading entities in the expanding plumber industry, so one year on we’re looking at what innovations this parthership has inspired.

Once partnered, one of the first action items both the now joint companies implemented was training programs which included one-day courses on Water Regulations, Legionella Cold Water Risk Assessment & Disinfection, Sanitary & Above Ground Drainage and Wet Room Design & Installation. These subjects are taught by experienced trainers who are considered experts in their field. It seems the partnership has improved the way tuitors are selected for the programs. The reasoning behind this training stems from the fact that the corporate leadership of this collaboration recognizes that the plumbing and heating industry is continually evolving and to keep up one has to be consistently investing.

Specifically, investing in the knowledge and abilities of the employees associated with the company. Improvement to teaching standards has benefited both niche courses such as Unvented Cylinder Installation basics and more general training programs like Gas Appliances basics which is an obvious step in the right direction for those who are looking to achieve their Gas Safe card.

Furthermore, in addition to technical skills, the executives have made it a point to personally and on a company-wide perspective, keep up with new technology and legislation. This updated pervasive technique of instructing and informing plumbers is set to revolutionize the industry in different ways. To provide incentive, the APHC has offered 100 rewards aimed at companies that apply for and complete the course. Plumbers are no longer discrete entities that are immune to the growing pace of the world. Now,  they are integrated service workers that must be consciously aware of their intercontinental surroundings.

How does the APHC and BREC partnership change the training scene of the plumbing industry in the UK

The partnership between APHC and BREC is set to positively impact the training scene of the plumbing industry. Together they set to increase industry standards primarily through development qualifications. They want to start from the ground up, slowly building the confidence, expertise, and intellectual stamina of plumbers destined to serve the next generation. In support of their initial mission, the integrated companies established a week called the “Quality Plumber Week” to discuss the pros and cons of introducing a single mandatory plumbing license.

The idea that one must have a license to practice is a hot topic amongst industry leaders, and executives understand that. Both companies understand, but they also know that to progress in a forward direction, you must lead the way by first opening a conversation. Conversations allow ideas to flow and dialogue to be expressed between persons who have different perspectives in the future. While the “Quality Plumber Week” is a novice idea that has recently been executed, its importance still reigns as if it was already a trademark event.

Training Scene of the Future

The future of plumbing has many different facets. On one end, it is more involved with plumbers having to obtain a license, and large companies streamlining the training of these individuals. On the other hand, the future of training also pays homage to the change in times.

With information as abundant as ever, plumbers are not exempt from having both casual and textual knowledge. The training offered, since the merger of the Association of Plumbing & Heating Contractors and British Plumbing Employers Council, has catalyzed change in this concrete facility motivated industry.


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BDC 311 : Dec 2023