The Transform Programme
Building sustainability skills and job opportunities for young unemployed people

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Overview
Transform is a three year campaign from British Gas, Global Action Plan and Accenture to train young unemployed people in sustainability skills, employing 1,000 of them through British Gas community projects that aim to improve the energy efficiency of local households.

Impact
Operating across Great Britain, Transform gives young people the opportunity to undertake a BTEC accredited course free of charge, with all successful candidates guaranteed an interview for a job.

Outcomes across two schemes to date (Midlands and Glasgow):
27 youngsters trained
17 recruited by British Gas
8 given mentoring and further support in onward job search
2 secured other employment
Feedback from Midlands scheme:
100% improved their confidence and skills
94% improved their ability to talk about environmental issues
94% said they are considering:
– A job in sustainability
– Volunteering in their community
– Further education or training

Innovation
Transform is a creative and practical partnership between British Gas, Global Action Plan and Accenture that has been specifically designed to tackle the issues of youth unemployment, but in a way that helps support households most in need and lowers the country’s carbon emissions. It is a truly sustainable initiative, helping us achieve our Energy Company Obligation targets set by the Government to improve the energy efficiency of domestic housing stock, addressing the issue of insufficient green skills in the UK, and working towards meeting British Gas’s aspirations to tackle the fundamental challenges of youth unemployment.[/one_half_last]

Insight
Over the next three years we will roll Transform out across the country. We are in early days of this programme, but we have already learnt a lot:
• Working with supportive local partners such as Jobcentre Plus is key to signposting young people to the scheme.
• We must ensure enough lead-in time to be able to reach the most unemployed young people, bearing in mind that many only visit the Jobcentre once a fortnight.
• Transform applicants vary in skills and educational experience from a few GCSEs to degree level, and therefore the training needs to be sensitive to these diverse needs.
• That the teamwork and relationship building elements are just as important to the young people as the technical knowledge.

Inspiration
• Transform provides an opportunity for responsible businesses to help address youth unemployment whilst fulfilling business requirements.
• It is a replicable model that could be adapted to a wide variety of roles in any given sector.
• As an energy company with Governmental obligations, Transform enables us to use this opportunity to demonstrate a holistic approach to local regeneration.
• The programme differentiates us from our competitors in the marketplace by demonstrating an innovative approach to partnership working and creating social value.
• Transform actually saves us money when compared to our normal volume resourcing costs![/one_half_last] Speaker
Hayley Grocock,
Corporate Responsibility Manager
British Gas

Hayley has a diverse commercial background, having been a consultant with Deloitte and a retail manager with HMV for several years, before moving into the corporate responsibility field in 2007.

Spending five years in management consultancy specialising in CR and corporate governance matters, Hayley was responsible for providing strategy advice at Board level or just below, policy development, technical and narrative reporting, brokering of relationships with stakeholders including NGOs and campaigning groups, and external and internal communications support.

Hayley joined the CR team at British Gas in May 2012 and has worked on several major projects with a particular focus on community investment. One of Hayley’s key projects has been a flagship cross-sector partnership programme entitled Transform, which aims to provide sustainability skills to unemployed young people via a bespoke BTEC course. All successful candidates are guaranteed an interview on a British Gas community project being delivered via the Energy Company Obligation. Since its launch in February 2013, the programme has attracted widespread media attention and high-level political engagement.

Hayley is married to Martin. They live in Staines-upon-Thames in Surrey.