Vince James B.E.M. AIRO joins Your Consultation Group (YCG) on 1st June as Director of Human Resources. Vince will spearhead collaboration with industrial heavyweights including Network Rail for supporting serving prisoners and prison leavers into employment and reintegration into society. Utilising engagement, education, employment and supporting with accommodation strategies.

Vince, who has had thirty-three years with Network Rail, most recently as lead on the industrial dispute with the RMT, has been at the forefront of Network Rail’s initiative within prisons for over a decade supporting the inspirational employer programme.

The scale of ambition is to expand the scope of cur- rent initiatives to bring a full suite of skilled engineering and managerial posts and life skills into scope for serving prisoners and prison leavers who want to upskill via YCG’s Pathways Programme.

The role will combine Vince’s passion for supporting prisoners (he has been on the IMB at HMP Littlehey since 2021 and has recently joined the IMB at HMP Five Wells) with his systems thinking methodology and leadership experience as well as organisational planning skills acquired at Network Rail.

“I am excited to be able to utilise my skills in such a novel way” says Vince of his appointment. “I am very very passionate about prisoner welfare and helping prisoners reintegrate into their communities on release. My new role will allow me to bring a lifetime

of experience in project delivery and systems planning to the table. I have been tasked by Raff and his team to work with some of the largest socially responsible companies in the country to help them identify and redress current and future skills shortages by providing these opportunities to those with unspent convictions.

“I have been hugely impressed with the vision and the technology YCG is bringing to prisons. The YCG Careers Service is a fantastic frictionless tool that allows socially responsible employers to advertise current vacancies to serving prisoners nearing end of sentence, but it also allows employers to offer opportunities to serving prisoners who do not yet have the required skills to up-skill for roles with the employer prior to release.

“Employers are increasingly recognising that people with unspent convictions represent a significant talent pool. YCG’s Pathways Programme is designed to allow serving prisoners to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by those UK leading employers who are signing up to the Programme.

“Our Academy provides access to fully funded NVQs, apprenticeships, and higher-level qualifications. Courses, funding, and jobs can all be sourced online where technology allows or via prison Employment, Education or Resettlement team leads.

“Some of our sponsoring employers are already offering managerial roles at £85,000 p.a. and I am hoping to add highly paid engineering and surveying opportunities too. I am particularly interested in assisting those in the YOI and in the female estate, because there is no reason for young people and female graduates of our Academy not to become part of the construction and built environment scene.”

Raff Esposito, Director for Social Impact at YCG commented: “Like many major employers, Network Rail has recently changed its employment framework to more easily be able to assimilate prison leavers into its workforce. Vince brings a vast breadth of knowledge of the specification, identification, planning and delivery of safe, effective work across a range of portfolios, including establishing stakeholder requirements. The negotiation of works within a sector where safeguarding issues are key to success is going to be a priority to the delivery of training within the closed estate. Vince has been part of substantial programmes of work and change including the recent modernisation of maintenance at Network Rail, the safety consultations, restructuring of national control and the working practices at major managed rail stations. He will be a great asset for us going forward.”

Vince said: “I enjoyed working on recent changes to the Network Rail employment framework with Nilo Ali, Head of Resourcing at Network Rail, and I am delighted that I will be collaborating with Nilo again.”

Prison Governors who would like to enquire about being included in hard skills training within their establishment should contact Vince at