The Route 2 Retrofit – Our Journey So Far

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Wow. What a journey we’ve been on so far with the Route 2 Retrofit. With a variety of cohorts now under our belt and a range of local employer partners on board, I want to take this opportunity to look back at what we set out to achieve earlier this year and check in on the progress of that vision.

In life, it’s important to take stock of how far you’ve come. Whether it’s in your personal or professional life, in a project or your entire career. Even when the road has been particularly bumpy and you find yourself bogged down in the messiest of weeds, it’s the bigger picture, reflection exercises that help you to solidify your greatest moments of growth. Because if you don’t stop to check in on these milestones, they might as well never have happened.

When I consider RE:geon’s position as a training provider now specialising in green, with over 60 skilled learners in retrofit, and a pool of employer partners who feel like an extension of our family – I’d of snapped your hand off! And guess what? that’s exactly where we are.

The transition to Net Zero and the embracement of new methods like Domestic Retrofit is no mean feat. We, as a region still have so much to do to come anywhere close to our targets BUT there have been SO MANY learnings in recent weeks that have helped to shape our Retrofit proposition and series of training pathways. Our original retrofit offer was geared around driving awareness and education for green skills in construction, highlighting how advantageous this new skill set could be to both the learner and the employer. This has evolved considerably since then into four unique pathways, geared up for four very different audiences. Four key functions who make up a typical business structure. Why? Because nailing Net Zero is not one size fits all outfit. But nor should it sit solely on one person’s shoulders within an organisation to learn and execute. From the light touch advisors to the in-depth installers, my amazing team and I have been squirrelling away to build bespoke modules that tap into this rationale with our network of incredible employer partners by our side.

It’s of no surprise that the employer partners we currently work with to bring these pathways to life are like-minded organisations and business owners who share our vision for a more sustainable future. As well as our passion for nurturing individuals to plug the green skills gaps to get us there. 

Something that always strikes me with our employer partners is that they never knew this type of fully funded Government solution to recruitment and training was out there for them. Their amazement at being able to unlock these opportunities and play their part in developing such a high calibre of talented candidates now set to enter the industry is a constant reminder of WHY I have to keep doing what I’m doing. And why the Route 2 Retrofit is a programme which undoubtedly is here to stay! Sure, it will grow, and evolve. No doubt taking many forms to suit the direction we’re headed, but at its rawest, it’s inspiring PEOPLE to make change. In their careers and in how they operate.

We’ve spent a lot of time over recent weeks collating feedback from our learners to build up a library of understanding into how the Route 2 Retrofit has inspired their next steps into employment and what we can do to make it even better. But what about our employers?

Last month we completed our third cohort in the Route 2 Retrofit, but our first in collaboration with Fortify Solutions. I met up with Director Michael Scott last week to find out what he thought of our first programme together. But before we hear what he had to say, let’s look back to where it all began back in July:

Milestone Checkpoint 1 – July 2022

  • Before the cohort started, we asked Director, Michael Scott how he felt about working with us at RE:geon. He’s what he had to say:

“We are excited to be working with such an innovative training provider in the delivery of our tailor-made Route 2 Retrofit programme, which will be specifically designed around Fortify’s areas of expertise within the sustainability sector. We want to focus on providing inquisitive and enthusiastic learners with an overview of all aspects of our work, and offer them a pathway to long-term employment and development within the ever-expanding sustainability sector. Nadia and her team are quite clearly experts in their field, and we are confident they will prove to be the perfect partner to assist in the delivery of our bespoke training opportunity to an untapped wealth of local talent.”

Michael Scott, Director at Fortify Solutions

Milestone Checkpoint 2 – August 2022

After working together with Fortify to design a bespoke programme, Cohort 3 began their Skills Bootcamp. Comprising a Careers Workshop, range of Classroom training and onsite work experience across live sites and projects.

Milestone Checkpoint 3 – September 2022

Cohort 3 completed their Skills Bootcamp! Together, we delivered a very successful cohort with a 71% success rate with 5 of our 7 graduates having received successful job opportunities with Fortify, specialising in Chasing & Pointing.

Milestone Checkpoint 4 – October 2022

Since completing the Route 2 Retrofit Programme with Fortify, the successful candidates are settling into their new positions extremely well and are now key team members at Fortify Solutions. We thought we’d check in with Michael to see how he felt the programme went and his opinions on the Route 2 Retrofit Programme with RE:geon. Watch his video below to see what he had to say:

Three months is all it’s taken. Three months to design a programme, successfully deliver it and now reap the rewards of positive behavioural change. If this is the position, we’re in today then I might burst just thinking of where we could be 12 months from now. Until then my focus will remain firm (I’m making a promise here) on educating employers that this opportunity exists. It’s real and it’s ready for the taking.

So, if you, or anyone in your network might be stunned to discover the funded solutions we can deliver then do one thing, send them my way.

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