Representative organisations’ specialist Darrell Matthews has been appointed by SELECT, the campaigning trade body for the electrotechnical sector in Scotland, as its new Managing Director, replacing Newell McGuiness.
Matthews, who has been working in tandem with Newell during a handover period, has a wide range of commercial experience, most recently with industry bodies such as EEF, the Institution of Civil Engineers and the Institute of Directors.
He joins SELECT, which represents member companies that collectively employ in excess of 15,000 people, at a time of sustained campaigning activity. Key issues for the sector are protection of title, apprenticeships and ensuring members get paid on time.
Matthews said: “I feel very lucky to be able to join a successful organisation which is growing, and helping its members to grow too. It is a credit to its directors and its members and I want to work closely with them on key decision-making.”
“I have enjoyed working for organisations which promote their industry as well as serving members’ interests. It is important to explain, both to the UK and Scottish governments and the public, what the electro-technical sector is trying to achieve. Electricians mostly go through a long, intense apprenticeship to gain their qualifications and it is vital that we ensure the public – and politicians – understand and respect this level of commitment to the trade.”
His priorities with SELECT, he said, will be “to push the Excellence in Skills agenda, to support the campaign currently being addressed in the Scottish Parliament for Protection of Title and to further promote apprenticeships and training.
“Protection of Title is extremely important on many grounds, but we also want the sector to be inclusive and we will focus on creating as many ‘routes to qualification’ as possible for electricians who do not have a grade card. I want to continue SELECT’s excellent offering in areas such as advice lines, which handled 1500 calls last year from electricians in the field who wanted to access the latest technical information and guidance. We will continue to work closely with our industry partners, the SJIB, SECTT and Unite the Union to promote apprentices as the future of the industry and to explain to young people how rewarding a career as an electrician can be.”
Thanking outgoing Managing Director Newell McGuiness for his contribution to SELECT over his 13 years in post, he said: “Newell’s will be difficult boots to fill. I am privileged that he offered me such valuable guidance and helped me get my feet under the desk. He has done a cracking job over many years of promoting the electrotechnical industry in Scotland.”