• Rob Dean inside the newly set up Velo Academy
    Rob Dean inside the newly set up Velo Academy
  • Another corner of Velo Academy’s class room, which is set up to handle a maximum of eight students in total.
    Another corner of Velo Academy’s class room, which is set up to handle a maximum of eight students in total.
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On 29th May we wrote that 99 Bikes was about to open a new bicycle mechanics training program called ‘Velo Academy’.

The first course has now been completed and we asked Rob Dean, Training & Development Manager at Velo Academy how it went.

“It ran over seven days and finished on Tuesday 17th July. We had four students through, three of whom were external and one was internal,” Rob said.

“We placed one of the students in our store in Cannon Hill and another one I believe has been offered a position at our Port Melbourne store.

“There is definitely recruitment aspect of it. We don’t try to hide that. At the moment there’s a shortage of good quality mechanics out there and part of the reason for setting Velo “Academy up was to try to fill that gap that we’re experiencing and that we know that a lot of other retailers are experiencing as well.

“We know it’s going to become more pressing as we both up-staff our existing stores and open more stores going into the future. However our course is definitely open to people not looking to work at 99 Bikes.

“The first course was really a pilot. It gave us scope to develop the existing coursework and improve it. We think five days will be a more natural time frame for this particular course in future rather than seven as some people have to take a week’s leave to do the course.

“We haven’t given the course a big push so far. It has just been word of mouth, but we quickly filled the first course, which was excellent.”