Regeneration & Retrofit: The two R’s that will transform your career in Construction

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If you’ve been following our social channels recently, you’ll have heard us talk A LOT about Regeneration in Construction and Domestic Retrofit. But what are they? And most importantly WHY do YOU need to know about them to have a successful career in Construction? This week’s blog explores….

Let’s kick it off with the definitions:

Regeneration and Retrofit are very similar concepts, and generally go hand in hand, particularly when it comes to the construction industry. However, there are a few subtle differences to take note of.

Regeneration is the process of redeveloping existing infrastructure in order to revitalise it and create an overall improved environment. For example, regenerating a local area or community. We’re talking “big picture” stuff.

Retrofit on the other hand gets more specific. It’s the process of making a series of planned changes to an existing building, and is generally done in order to improve the energy efficiency of the building and to reduce its emissions. It’s taking actions like Retrofit which directly leads to the outcome of Regeneration.

OK, so now we know what they are. But why is Regeneration and Retrofitting so important?

It’s no secret that Global Warming (or Climate Change) is fast becoming one of the biggest collective problems faced in a generation. You’ve no doubt seen it mentioned on the TV, in the news and even on social media but what is it and what causes it? It’s widely acknowledged that the dramatic increase in human-caused greenhouse gasses has resulted in gradual heating of the earth’s surface, oceans and atmosphere. Fortunately, the UK has been a leader and strong advocate for fighting against climate change and set itself a target of becoming Carbon Net Zero by the year 2050 (You can read more about this in our other Blog here. This commitment has paved the way for the emergence of regeneration, and specifically retrofitting, bringing with it some fantastic opportunities for anyone starting out their new careers in Construction to benefit from.

By making changes to existing homes to enable them to become more energy efficient, you can increase the lifespan of the property, reduce the cost of living by bringing utility bills down and above all improve the quality of life for the occupants inside – all while creating new jobs in the process, what’s not to like?

So, how do we come into this?

According to the Government, there are 27 million domestic buildings in the UK, and the majority of them require urgent and significant energy efficiency improvements. Previous attempts to deliver retrofit have been made over the years but much of it was unstructured, unqualified and ultimately unsuccessful. So needless to say, a strategy rethink was required if we’re to have any hope of getting near the Government’s Net Zero goals. This brought about the launch of the “PAS 2035 Framework”, the Bible of UK Retrofit which outlines all legislation, standards and requirements for the industry. Even most interesting for you, (and any young aspiring individual keen to embark on a career in Construction) however, is the outline of the future job roles and desired skill sets that will be needed in order to deliver Retrofit effectively. Skill sets which are currently missing within the Construction industry. And skill sets which if you possessed them, would put you in VERY HIGH demand!

“In the retrofit industry, skills gaps have been cited as a major issue, in particular with the adoption of new technologies and solutions. Construction companies throughout the country are calling out for employees who are willing to embrace change and understand how to work smarter as well as greener to pave the way for a more sustainable future. At RE:GEN we are passionate about taking action on this, and together with RE:geon, we are putting the strategies in place to nurture and develop the right individuals to plug the current skills gaps needed to deliver and exceed our retrofit commitments.”

– Lee Francis, CEO at RE:GEN Group

So, do you fancy your chances at filling some of the future skill gaps the Construction industry so desperately needs?

Our BUILD UP Construction traineeship is dedicated to tackling the lack of education and skills gaps in the domestic retrofit sector. As a result of previous industry failings and lessons learnt, we’ve collaborated with RE:GEN Group to develop bespoke modules that explore the importance of taking a Fabric First Approach. What’s that we hear you say? Well, a Fabric First Approach to building design means maximising the performance of components and materials that make up the building fabric itself, before considering the use of mechanical or electrical service systems within the building. For example, focussing your attention on selecting the best loft insulation as a fabric that makes up the building. This approach brings with it a whole heap of benefits, but don’t worry, you’ll learn all about them as part of our traineeship. ☺

Our next Traineeship intake is set to land this summer so we’re on the lookout for young, ambitious individuals aged 19-24 and currently unemployed to join us in learning about the best-in-class skills to sustainably retrofit social housing. Through completion of our course, you will play a significant role in improving the lives and communities of the North East – doing your bit to contribute to our Net-Zero mission. Yes, that’s right, YOU will be part of the SOLUTION to a global PROBLEM. Talk about a MAJOR sense of pride!

It’s a no brainer! Get me signed up!

If you want to boost your employability, excel in a career in a career in Construction by taking a forward-thinking approach, and make a real difference to the world around you then the BUILD UP Construction programme is here for you. To get started, simply hit the button below to express your interest.

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