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Plumbing

The Plumbing Services industry provides general plumbing and repair work during construction and renovations of existing buildings in both domestic and commercial projects. The sector is driven by public health and environmental requirements arising from the water industry and the need for proper sanitation.

Plumbing is set to expand in the future with a stronger focus on environmental sustainability, alternative energy technology and water conservation.

This industry is predominately made up of small businesses that provide specialist services to contractors, developers and building and infrastructure owners. Key occupations in this industry as listed on the National Skills Needs List (NSNL) are: Plumber, Gas Fitter, Drainer and Roof Plumber.

What does this Industry cover?

Working in the plumbing services industry you could be providing the installation and repair of water supply, sewer lines, septic tanks, and drainage and gas systems. You will not construct large-scale sewerage or storm water drainage systems.

Roof plumbers are responsible for the guttering, any storm water pipes connected to rain water tanks and any other part of the drainage system that collects or disposes of storm water.

Gas fitting involves the installation, repair and maintenance, and the detection of leaks in gas lines and gas appliance.

Drainers design below ground drainage systems related to sewage disposal systems. They are responsible for installation and maintenance of these systems.

Job hunting information

Plumbing Services workers will need to look at ongoing training and learning to keep abreast of advances in water conservation, wastewater recycling and treatment and the renewable energies sector.

New technology needs plumbers to acquire new skills and knowledge. For example, cameras to detect leaks in pipes, high pressure hydraulic pumps connected to steel cables for trenchless sewer line replacement. The development of new products and water conservation to reduce the high carbon footprint of buildings, which accounts for around forty percent of global energy consumption.

It is suggested that in addition to learning STEM skills at school, a pre-apprenticeship is a good investment to completing a plumbing apprenticeship as this industry is heavily regulated and specific licences are required to operate once qualified as a tradesperson.

Critical thinking, problem solving, analytical skills, curiosity and imagination are all skills that are needed in the future and are highly sort after by employers.

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Information for further research

Industry information is published by peak level associations, government and major employers.  Accessing industry association sites, including member lists, is a good way of building up an understanding of an industry.  Visiting employer websites and looking for careers or employment menus helps identify how employers recruit and the skills they are recruiting.

 

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