Generation UK and Macquarie publish Skilling for #NetZero report

Backing the UK's first green jobs initiative

05 June 2023

In 2021, Macquarie Asset Management’s Green Investment Group (GIG) partnered with non-profit Generation UK and Macquarie Group to launch “Green Generation Jobs”, the UK's first-ever green jobs programme. The programme aims to help meet the challenges of unemployment and rising demand for green jobs by providing candidates with train-and-place pathways, equipping them to succeed in jobs fundamental to the transition to net zero. Within its first 18 months, almost 100 learners have been enrolled on six Green Generation Jobs training courses.

Key data


of graduates have found work within six months.


average placement salary of graduates


of graduates feel more prepared for the world of work.


The shift to net-zero will result in numerous job opportunities, with an estimated 2 million individuals needing to be upskilled by 2030 across various sectors, including wind, solar, and insulation, in order to meet global net zero targets. However, the supply of skilled workers is insufficient to meet demand, with 65% of surveyed "green" employers struggling to find the new hires necessary to meet the transition to net zero.

To avoid any delays in achieving the net zero goal, initiatives for green-skilling need to be prepared to scale up rapidly.

The opportunity exists to address youth unemployment and rising demand for green jobs simultaneously by providing unemployed young people with training and pathways to secure jobs essential to the net zero transition.

“Cross-sector collaboration is going to be critical to the race to net zero and the green jobs revolution. Partnering with Generation UK is going to be key to meeting growing demand, scaling the retrofit advisory programme into new markets, and accessing quality candidates with a passion for the environment.”

Rachel Engel
Regional Head, Macquarie Group Foundation


In response to these challenges, GIG, in collaboration with Macquarie Group and non-profit Generation UK, established the UK's first-ever "green jobs" programme in 2021. The programme had two objectives: to support thousands of individuals facing employment barriers and provide a pipeline of skilled, diverse, and motivated new hires for essential green jobs.

Generation UK's approach of providing profession-specific training for job readiness on day one was supported by GIG's seamless connection to sector experts, supported with seconded resources, and a steering group for guiding the key decisions. With catalytic funding from the Macquarie Group Foundation and working together in a collaborative partnership was essential to the project's success. All three organisations playing a vital role in decision-making and shortlisting potential job roles, as well as examining reports and learnings.

A 10-week, full-time, free training course was launched in 2021, marking the first-of-its-kind green jobs programme in the UK.

"Generation has equipped us with skills to enter the green energy sector with confidence. Lectures are interesting, enjoyable and engaging, thanks to the wonderful course tutors. I am hugely grateful for their expert guidance and to be offered a role within one month of finishing the course”.

Programme graduate


The programme has now launched a total of six training courses and has supported over 30 graduates in securing life-changing green jobs. As of April 2023, 34 learners have been placed in jobs, and 74% of those who graduated from the programme secured employment within six months.

Successful candidates have secured roles with an average annual placement salary of approximately £25,000, representing a significant improvement compared to pre-programme income, which was usually universal credit, and has been life-changing for many at a time when the cost of living is increasing.

The majority of placements were secured through matchmade interviews, with learners being put forward for ring-fenced vacancies at employer partners. Since the programme's launch, around 30 employers across the UK have pledged more than 50 vacancies for training course learners to attend interviews. Employer feedback has been positive, with five employers hiring learners multiple times.

Read Generation UK's report on the impact of the first 12 months of the programme.