Constructing a wind farm involves numerous different stages and expertise:
- Design and Manufacture
- Investment Decision, Development and Surveying
- Installation and Cabling
- Commissioning and Inspection
- Operations and Maintenance
During each of these stages a number of job roles exist, some will be office based, most will be in the field and either onshore or offshore. There may be a great deal of travelling involved, long shifts and high risk. There will be different rota patterns, often with several weeks away from home and you may be expected to work at short notice or cancel plans that may have been in place.
Throughout the development and approval stages the wind owners and operators will conduct several surveys with specialist companies to ensure that the proposed site is safe and that any development will not impact on the environment, they also monitor for sufficient levels of wind and the right type of wind is sustained to make that investment decision viable.
Recent years have seen a shift in Government policy and a decline in both public and financial support for on-shore wind. Most new UK based wind farms are now off-shore where larger and more efficient turbines can be installed away from public view.
There are still a large number of on-shore wind farms that require intensive maintenance. Although the rates of pay are generally lower, the work is more consistent and less affected by the weather. Sometimes the opportunities for beginning your career in wind are greater with onshore and the existing project teams tend to be very experienced and will mentor new members of the team.