Opinion Former Article

SOE: Industry view wanted on CV technician licensing

irtec, the IRTE's technician licensing scheme, is staying ahead of the game by asking industry to contribute to the Licence's direction, following a review by the irtec Steering Committee (iSC).

Over the past few months, a full review of the irtec Licensing Scheme has been carried out to look at irtec's key components. IRTE (Institute of Road Transport Engineers) Head of Operations and Communications Ian Chisholm said:

"As a renewable licensing scheme, irtec demonstrates a technician's current competence in the marketplace, and it is the job of the iSC to ensure the scheme reflects current industry requirements. This consultation will lead to a refreshed licence at renewal, guaranteeing a demonstration of current ability."

Developed in 2000 by the IRTE, a Professional Sector of SOE (Society of Operations Engineers), irtec is a renewable voluntary assessment scheme certifying the competence of technicians in the commercial vehicle, trailer and passenger carrying industries. In 2010, IRTE entered into a joint arrangement with IMI (Institute of the Motor Industry) to further strengthen irtec's aims to improve industry competence and standards. IRTE and IMI will work together on future irtec developments and initiatives, to ensure irtec reflects the changing needs of employers and industry.

The iSC consists of key industry representatives, including manufacturers, operators and training providers; however, irtec wants to give the entire industry the opportunity to discuss the scheme through this wider consultation, which after ten years is respected as a benchmark of skill.

The two specific areas the iSC initially intend to revise are 'Service Maintenance Technician', and the introduction of a further 'Inspection Technician' level. These are the focus for any immediate development and irtec is keen to receive input from interested parties.

For more information about irtec and the consultation, which ends on 3 September 2010, please visit www.irtec.org.uk .


Editor's notes:

For irtec/IRTE/SOE enquiries please contact:

. David Jones
Editorial & PR Coordinator
020 7630 1111


. Andrea Dick
Communications & Marketing Manager
020 7630 1111


For IMI enquiries please contact:
. Simon Bennett
PR Executive
01992 511 521


irtec (the I should always be in lower case) is a renewable voluntary testing and assessment scheme that certifies theoretical and practical skills of PCV Heavy Goods and light commercial vehicle technicians.

An irtec Licence proves commitment to safety and professional development by technicians and employers alike. irtec licences are awarded at three levels, depending on the candidate's skill and experience Once an irtec licence is issued, the technician is listed on a national register and bound by a code of conduct. The licence is valid for 5 years, after which the licence holder must undergo reassessment for renewal.

Further details are available from the irtec website at www.soe.org.uk/irtec.

IRTE (Institute of Road Transport Engineers)
The IRTE (Institute of Road Transport Engineers), one of the most respected names in UK transport, has been recognised as an impartial voice of the industry since 1947.
A Professional Sector of the Society of Operations Engineers (SOE), IRTE publishes an industry-leading technical journal, Transport Engineer, every month.
Transport Engineer is renowned for its incisive coverage of key issues, authoritative reporting, news analysis and informed comment.

IRTE also hosts regular technical seminars, forums and works alongside the DfT to promote efficiency and best practice. Recent events include trips and falls from vehicles, truck operation, fuel efficiency and the Road Safety Act.

IRTE's technical committee also produces regular industry guidance on key topics.
IRTE members come from a wide variety of transport-related roles. These include workshop managers, fleet engineers, transport managers, company directors, apprentices and technicians in the light and heavy goods vehicle and bus and coach sectors.

SOE (Society of Operations Engineers)
SOE is a professional membership organisation that successfully represents some 16,000 individuals and companies in engineering. It supports and encourages members throughout their careers and is committed to their ongoing growth and personal development.

Through a network of trustees, industry partners and members SOE promotes best practice in operational and health and safety initiatives. SOE offers members continuous professional development and support throughout their careers, providing definitive recognition for both achievement and status. The organisation is a Licensed Member of the Engineering Council and can nominate members for Engineering Council registration at EngTech, IEng and CEng levels.
SOE represents the Professional Sectors IRTE, IPlantE and BES and also runs the irtec Licensing Scheme.

Further details are available from the SOE website at www.soe.org.uk.

Follow SOE on Facebook at www.facebook.com.

The IMI is the professional association for individuals working in the motor industry and the Sector Skills Council for the automotive retail sector. It is also the governing body for the Automotive Technician Accreditation (ATA) scheme, which has over 24,000 accredited technicians and the Automotive Management Accreditation (AMA) scheme.

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