What we do
We’ve a highly-trained workforce of circa 3500, 40 + national operational centres, 4 training hubs and a fleet of over 2500 vehicles.
As a service provider, our Kelly Group workforce is our extended family, which is why we invest in their safety, training, careers, welfare, vehicles and tools they need to deliver excellence. Supporting our customers in the North of England, we have recently opened our new state-of-the-art national training facility at our multi-disciplinary operational centre in St Helens.
Mark Brian (Head of Recruitment and Training) gave us an insight into the new facilities in St Helens and discussed what the future holds for our Kelly Group training department.
New State-of-the-Art Training Centre at St Helens
“We were excited to open our new state-of-the-art training centre in September 2022 at St Helens. The new training school has a vast number of facilities available, including a practical training room where our national trainers are able to teach fibre splicing, network build for the Openreach and CityFibre contracts and setting up MDUs, which will support Kelly Group’s new Openreach MDU contract by training engineers for the northwest region. Within the same practical training space, we are able to train all installation elements on our practical wall, while perfecting customer service skills using our artificial house setting. Furthermore, our new training space facilitates one big classroom, which can split into smaller rooms, and a third classroom, all collectively accommodating 60 trainees at any time.
Kelly Group had existing training facilities, here at St Helens, where we could deliver training courses on a much smaller scale. These facilities are now supporting the new building with one small training room and a copper practical room for an additional 15 trainees.
On our training grounds, we featured two pole fields, street works bays, chambers and ducting to accommodate the PIA test rod and rope training. Carl Diggins oversees the operation locally as a centre manager and he is supported by three experienced national trainers, Roy Litter, Tony Lewis and Stephen Woods.
The Trainee Engineer Journey
Kelly Group’s new-to-field engineers normally spend two weeks at our training centre, however, this may vary depending on the contract they will be working on, which is then followed by a two-week long buddy period.
When trainees arrive on their first day, we hold a meet and greet session, where our trainers introduce new starters to the company, followed by their driving seminar delivered by one of the Group’s driving assessors. The second day starts with the Companies Safety Campaign NEST, which leads into the Health and Safety induction and focuses on their health and safety induction and practical elements such as, setting up ladders safely, the use of the tetra system, the correct way of opening chambers, JDUs and safe drilling. To wrap up their first week at Kelly Group, trainees will complete their first pole climbs on small practice poles, then learn how to set up ladders and climb larger poles. The first week is very much health and safety focused and provides trainees with hands-on experience on the basic practices.
The second week of training focuses on the craft element of their training journey as engineers learn and complete fibre or copper installs to customer premises. During this week they will cover underground provides, through chambers to cabinets and finally the installation process within the customer property. Throughout the two week course customer service is heavily covered providing the necessary skills for our engineers within their future working environment.
Our national trainers are working in a 1 trainer to 10 trainee ratio and rotate smaller groups, so while one group completes the overhead element of their training the other will focus on the underground element ensuring new-to-field engineers receive the support they need throughout their training.
Finally, all trainees complete an assessment confirming they have learnt all the basics and they are ready for their buddy period, where, as new-to-field engineers, they will gain more experience and learn more in-depth about the network which they will be working on from an experienced engineer.
The Future of Kelly Group’s Training Department
Kelly Group’s training department is continuously evolving. At the new St Helens Centre, training courses are currently predominantly run for our CityFibre contract, however, the facilities are set up to deliver large volume training for all our present and future clients - we’re not limited to what we can do. The new state-of-the-art training facility has been designed to accommodate any contracts we may win in the future.
The Group’s training department has been commercialising our facilities for clients such as CityFibre and Connexin. Since the new facilities have been open for business, we had the pleasure of providing training courses for CityFibre’s engineers and successfully delivered courses for 40 of their network field engineers and 10 fibre specialists. We also deliver training courses for a new client called Connexin who provides broadband exclusively for Hull’s local community. Through our strong working relationship with Connexin, we were delighted to develop their installation practices and provided them with a bespoke installation manual while our national trainers continuously train their telecoms engineers. They are an alternative ISP, the first company that builds network infrastructure within that area.
The department is currently exploring commercial training opportunities while our national trainers have delivered a two-day PIA S7 training course for over 90 Virgin Media 02 engineers Another unique opportunity that we’re currently exploring is a partnership with Genesis Training Limited who is working with Liverpool City Council to provide career opportunities for those individuals who have been looking for a career change. A trial course is scheduled to take place in St Helens on Monday 3rd April and last for 10 days. We hope some of these people will become integral members of our Kelly Group workforce and build successful careers with us.
The future is looking bright for our training department as we continue growing and enhancing our training methods, facilities and services.”
- Mark Brian (Head of Recruitment and Training)
The Airport Hub,
Furry Park, Santry,
We are always recruiting for the best people in the industry, click here see our latest vacancies.