Managing Editor, IFSEC Insider

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James Moore is the Managing Editor of IFSEC Insider, the leading online publication for security and fire news in the industry. James writes, commissions, edits and produces content for IFSEC Insider, including articles, breaking news stories and exclusive industry reports. He liaises and speaks with leading industry figures, vendors and associations to ensure security and fire professionals remain abreast of all the latest developments in the sector.
September 24, 2021


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Engineers of Tomorrow

Security World Skills UK and Fire Engineers of Tomorrow 2021: Meet the finalists!

IFSEC Global and Skills for Security speak to several of the finalists for this year’s World Skills UK (WSUK) electronic security system and fire Engineers of Tomorrow competitions to understand more about why they’re taking part, what making the final means to them and why they’d encourage others to get into the sector!

Find out more about the 2021 Engineers of Tomorrow and World Skills UK competition, here.


Jessica Goodson – Fire Engineers of Tomorrow

  • Company: JCI
  • Training provider: Banham Academy

Hi, my name is Jess Goodson, and I live in north Norfolk.

I work for ADT Johnson Controls, and I am a fire and security installation apprentice. I did well at high school, and went on to do Physics, Maths and Biology at A level.

I like the industry as it is always changing, and there is always something to think about. I believe I am working well within my company as I have won apprentice of the year for both my company’s awards and the BSI awards. My favourite part of the sector is fire, as I find this most interesting. My future ambitions are to start a company of my own.

Competitions like WSUK and shows like IFSEC are important to spread awareness of the industry, and also allow people to show case what they know. Apprentices are very important as they are the future of the industry, and without them we would not progress.


Josh Stewart – Security World Skills UK

  • Company: Assure Alarms
  • Training provider: GTG Training

My name is Josh and I’m from Glasgow. Currently I’m working for Assure Fire and Security based in Glasgow. It is run as its own company, but is actually owned by Arnold Clark.

I went to Bellahouston Academy for the first three years of secondary school before joining an education project called Newlands Junior college. This was basically set up by a group of people putting their own money into running a school/college-like environment for people who didn’t get on well in school. This entailed a two-year programme to do your third and fourth year of education. We had regular classes such as maths, english, science, but we also had the choice to take part in courses at official colleges such as Glasgow city college. I took part in courses on construction, business management, engineering and mechanical courses for the two years I was there, gaining qualifications in all those departments.

I became interested in this industry as when searching for a career I did not have a specific choice in mind I only had preferences that it was ‘hands-on’ and I could travel to different places while working. So when I saw this opportunity, it suited me perfectly. I have thoroughly enjoyed taking part in this year’s competition and have got further than I expected. I have enjoyed being able to challenge myself and to put the knowledge I have learned over the past two years to the test.

I have ambitions of having my own fire and security company in the future. Competitions such as World Skills UK are important in the industry as it gives apprentices the opportunity to put the skills forward to people out with their own company. I believe the apprenticeship programme is vital for future generations as it gives people who do not want to carry on the educational route, such as college/university, a chance to have successful careers doing the job they love.

Josh photo

Richard Collingwood – Security World Skills UK

  • Company: JCI
  • Training provider: Banham Academy                     

I live in the Northeast and work for JCI ADT. It is a global technologies company that covers all aspects of building management. I have a variety of qualifications already such as 11 GCSEs, 1 A level, 2 BTECs, an NVQ and BTEC and now I am studying as an FESS apprentice.

I like the industry because it is always changing and there is a mix of practical install and technical aspects (programming, new technologies). We have new jobs in different areas and no two jobs are the same, and there is new growth in the industry supported by the changes to the ECS card and the FESS apprenticeship.

So far in the competition I am doing very well and have already been told that I will have a successful career with my skills and abilities. My future ambition is to become a fire commissioning engineer and to specialise in fire detection.

Events and competitions like IFSEC and WSUK are very important for the industry as they promote good working practices and highlight the success of new people in the industry.

I think apprenticeships are extremely important as it offers a way of learning and access to the industry that may have been difficult to access for new starters before. As someone who has never felt total comfortable in an academic setting such as school or university, I feel that I have been successful in a way that I wouldn’t if this apprenticeship wasn’t available. Thanks again for running this competition!

Richard Collingwood

Leo Green – Fire Engineers of Tomorrow

  • Company: BK Fire Ltd
  • Training provider: Skills for Security

Hi, my name is Leo Green and I am from Sittingbourne in Kent, and I work for BK Fire LTD.

After finishing Meopham Secondary School, I completed my Electrical level 2 at Midkent college in Gillingham.

I like this industry, because it’s different every day and there are different types of problems while on site. This makes it a bit more interesting because you’re not always doing/looking at the same problem. Also, I like how there are different types of setups in different properties and the way they are programmed.

I enjoy various aspects of the work such as, one day I could be doing fire alarms then the next day I could be doing smoke ventilation or doing serving works. Or installing works to fire alarms and AVO systems. Some days I could be out doing fault finding and doing small work repairs – the variety is great!

I think my performance in the competition has been to a good standard as I’ve worked really hard on it, and have spent a lot of time preparing for the different type of tasks and managed to complete them on time.

My future ambitions are to learn how to commission fire systems after installations, as well as to be able to do installs confidently without having someone shadowing me and to learn cause and effects.

In my opinion, having these sort of competitions drives younger people like myself to work towards something that could better them in the future, especially if there are awards at the end. Also, it drives people to want to learn more and do better.

I think apprenticeships are really good because you’re getting on-site and off-site training, and get to learn while on the job, and then get an approved qualification at the end of it.

Leo Green

Gianluca Mori – Security World Skills UK

  • Company: Banham Group
  • Training provider: Banham Academy

Aged 32, I realised it’s never too late for a career switch. I am thankful to Banham Security, a leading security company, and Banham Academy, for giving me the opportunity to renew my passion for the security industry through a solid apprenticeship.

I cannot believe that a year and a half of the FESS apprenticeship is already behind me. There are a variety of tasks and challenges we go through each day in the field, in addition to a full theory programme at the company’s HQ, making the learning process extremely smooth.

I’ve already learnt how to carry out PMV on a wide variety of Intruder Alarm Systems and Fire Alarm Systems. Therefore, my supervisor is now happy for me to take a supervised lead on the PMV process on a daily basis.

The reason I like this industry is because my true passions are electronics and technologies of the future. As well, I consider myself quite a handy person and I’m always looking to challenge myself with a new quest. This, combined with an electrical background, means I am trying to find my path to become the best security systems installation engineer I can be.

I believe that events and competitions like IFSEC and WSUK are so important for this industry to support and showcase the capabilities of the most talented next generation of apprentice engineers.

Tony Steer – Security World Skills UK & Fire Engineers of Tomorrow

  • Company: JCI
  • Training provider: Banham Academy

Hi, my name is Tony Steer and I’m from Medway in Kent.

I am an apprentice fire and security engineer currently working for ADT/ Johnson Controls. The company is a multinational corporation which specialises in many sectors including air conditioning, refrigeration and of course fire and security systems.

I achieved GCSE C grade in all core subjects and a grade B in Science overall at school. Once I left, I attended college for one year studying an engineering course.

What’s good about this industry is that no two jobs are the same and technology is changing constantly which means I get to learn something new almost every day. The industry allows you to meet new people daily and because no two jobs are the same you can gain wide knowledge and learn to take different approaches to different jobs.

In all honesty I am not sure how I have done in the competition so far. All I know is that I have passed both fire and security tests at the beginning of the competition which is a great start.

My future ambitions include becoming a manager that manages my own team but also, I would like to have an opportunity to work internationally. I believe this would help with my learning and I get to experience how other countries design and install systems.

These competitions are important as they help promote the industry in a good light and also it’s a chance for apprentices to compete and share their knowledge with others through friendly competition.

For me apprenticeships are important especially when you’re trying to learn a trade. The apprenticeship offers an opportunity for the youngster to start a new career, gain an education and get paid whilst doing so. Apprentices are the future of the industry so training them correctly will boost the industry they are learning to work in!

Owen Nelson – Security World Skills UK

  • Company: EFT Systems
  • Training provider: Skills for Security

I live in the northwest of England in the city of Liverpool.

I work for a company called EFT systems, part of the EFT group based in Southport. At EFT systems we install, maintain and protect fire and security systems such as fire alarms, intruder alarms, CCTV and access control systems.

Previous to working at EFT, I went to Southport college and studied engineering and electrical qualifications over three years.

I enjoy working in the industry as every day is different. I feel as though I have progressed well through the competition and learnt some new things along the way.

In the future I would like to be a highly qualified engineer and possibly progress into commissioning and the design sector.

These competitions are important because they help build confidence and promote working hard to achieve your goals. I think apprenticeships are important because they help people start a career rather than a job, and they also help gain further qualifications to progress in each industry.

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