What is IE3?
At a time where millions of college graduates leave school thousands of dollars in debt, skilled trades represent an opportunity to obtain a career without putting racking up debt. However, skilled trades lack the prestige of jobs like attorney or physician. As a result, many contractors have difficulty hiring the personnel they need.
Dave Kyle, owner and general manager of Trademasters, has been active in attempting to increase the appeal of careers in the skilled trades, especially in HVAC. One way to accomplish this goal is to rebrand the industry, replacing the label HVAC with IE3 — Indoor Environment and Energy Efficiency. Not only does IE3 sound “cooler” than HVAC, it’s is a more accurate description of the essential function served by HVAC systems, according to Kyle.
“You have to look at the whole building, not just HVAC. It’s not just a piece of equipment; it’s the box it’s in. It’s the building. It’s (IE3) is on my trucks and on my business cards. IE3 appeals to younger people who want to make a difference, and to veterans,” Kyle said.
Younger people are also needed to build upon advances in technology and equipment that reduce the carbon footprint of buildings – and especially HVAC systems, according to Kyle.
“We need highly skilled people to make buildings work more energy efficiently. If the developing world starts to live like us, we’re going to have a lot of issues,” Kyle said.