Am I Needed in this Industry?
I would love to make this abundantly clear.
We need you in this industry.
We need you like peanut butter needs Jelly like roses need bees like... well we need you bad.
The number one reason is we need you to help save lives. That’s worldwide – and that’s no small task.
Being well-trained in this industry gives you the data you’d need to advocate for code compliance & better fire protection practices.
Your input and your help will make our buildings and our communities safer from fire.
Despite being in the twenty first century, we still have a fire problem. Too many people are killed from fire.
We don’t have great worldwide numbers, but in the US alone, where codes and standards are relatively well established, there are still over three thousand deaths due to fire each year. Buildings now involve more combustibles, are built lighter, and have more plastics and synthetic materials which tend to burn much more toxic. Our buildings, especially our homes, are more hazardous then they’ve ever been.
Being a fire protection advocate doesn’t mean you need to hold a sign or pitchfork and march down main street. It means being involved in projects, helping “look-out” to make sure that buildings are code-compliant and meet the gut-check for a reasonable level of fire safety.
Doing good work in this field means you’re looking out for the safety of our community with better, more firesafe solutions.
I hear from employers all the time about how they are constantly looking for good help. In some cases they need warm bodies in some cases they need more experienced help and just about all cases they need good people.
Fire Protection industry is a lesser known industry, so those who go through technical programs or undergraduate degrees just don't know about how well the industry does and even that it exists.
We don't get the press that electrical engineering and mechanical engineering get .
So many people tend to gravitate into this industry from other disciplines. Some people know about it because their uncle was in the industry or their grandpa was a fitter or they were a mechanical engineer and got hired by a sprinkler contractor and fell in love with the industry.
We in the fire protection industry are a collective melting pot of experienced people from civil engineering mechanical engineering electrical engineering plumbing design and a very small minority have degrees in something related to Fire Protection in Fire Protection directly
We need you in this industry because we are continually seeing experienced people retire without enough help to supplement that loss.
Call it the GREAT EXODUS.
This is a multibillion dollar industry in the US alone.
There is really big money going around in manufacturing in consulting and design. Just because we don't have the same number of people that HVAC design does doesn't mean that there isn't a value to our industry. We struggle to find enough people to do work in this industry.
Our clients tell us that those who are really good are really expensive. What does that tell us? That tells us that the demand is much higher than the supply in it drives up prices for quality Fire Protection people. For us in the industry that's a really good thing. Plenty of job opportunity, great salaries, great opportunities and cool projects.
As an industry though, we really struggle to recruit and train and develop new talent
Our supply is much less than the demand.
Individually this is a really good thing. There’s great job opportunities, great salary and benefits, and a whole lot of opportunity for those that are in the industry. That goes for engineering technicians, licensed and registered engineers, consultants, project managers, installers, or specialty inspectors. If you are great at what you do and have a track record of success, you’re likely to be very well compensated in this industry. In a 2019 survey, for example, SFPE found that the median salary for fire protection engineers is over $118,000. While this can range substantially, it’s a healthy indicator that there is plenty of potential for personal financial success in this industry.
For the industry as a whole, we can’t grow and share the message and help do great work if we don’t have enough people in the industry.
Why am I needed in this industry?
Number one is because you can help us save lives through great work in fire protection.
Number two is that companies all across the industry are really struggling to recruit and develop experts in this industry. You need to be here because there is an abundance of opportunity to have a great career, make great money, and really make a difference in saving lives.
I'm Joe Meyer, this is MeyerFire University.
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