Capstone Infrastructure - Canada’s Clean Energy Innovators

With detailed insight from Chandler Robertson, our senior consultant, and Capstone’s long-serving HR manager, Sherry Provis, this case study will unearth who Capstone are, how our partnership with them came to be, and how we helped them overcome their hiring goals and grow their internal team.  

With the demand for renewable energy soaring, driven by increasing environmental consciousness and sustainability goals, it's expected that renewables will account for over 90% of global electricity expansion over the next five years, overtaking coal to become the largest source of global electricity by early 2025.

In the quest for this greener, more sustainable future, there are pioneering organizations that stand as beacons of innovation and dedication to the cause. Capstone Infrastructure, founded in Toronto, Canada (2004) is one such entity that has been making waves in the renewable energy industry. 

Powering Sustainable Futures

As one of Canada’s clean energy innovators, Capstone Infrastructure has a presence across six Canadian provinces and the US, with 31 renewable power and clean energy facilities in operation, generating enough energy to power approximately 180,000 homes annually. 

With nearly two decades of experience in the renewables market, Capstone Infrastructure continually seeks to expand its contributions to a low-carbon future. This vision for expansion was spearheaded in the middle of the pandemic, with a need to make multiple permanent hires. 

However, with limited internal resources and availability, Capstone Infrastructure required a recruitment partner to become an extension of their brand and to support them with their hiring needs. That’s where we come in. 

Who is Capstone Infrastructure?

Capstone Infrastructure was founded in Toronto, Canada (2004) after separating from the Australian financial services group Macquarie Group Limited to pursue its aims of contributing to global renewable energy efforts. 

Since its formation, Capstone has established a legacy within the renewables space, investing and operating in clean energy organizations in specialisms such as wind, solar, biomass run-of-river hydro, and natural gas. The company prides itself as one of Canada’s leading independent power producers, with nearly two decades of experience building, operating, and owning diversified renewable energy facilities across Canada. 

Their mission is to help progress the energy transition through creative and innovative thinking, developing strong partnerships, and committing to their values of having a work ethic focused on quality and integrity. Alongside its mission and values, Capstone has a vision focused on generating the low-carbon future of North America. 

Ultimately, the words of their 17-year veteran HR manager, Sherry Provis, best summarize who Capstone are:

“We are a group of people who are dedicated to getting to zero emissions, lowering our carbon footprint, and providing power to people, neighborhoods, and families. Ultimately, we want to make a difference in this world and feel good about what we do.”

Installed Capacity
Hours of Electricity
Homes Powered Annually

The full renewable energy lifecycle

Across the six Canadian provinces and the US, Capstone has a portfolio of 31 renewable power and clean energy facilities. 

A significant reason Capstone has found and continues to succeed in the renewable energy industry is because of its people - the people Capstone describes to be its greatest asset. Sherry clarified this to us and emphasized that she has stayed with Capstone for 17 years because of the people. 

Capstone's projects span across the full renewable energy lifecycle in a range of fields. To date they have: 

  • 21 Wind facilities
  • 4 Hydro facilities
  • 4 Solar facilities
  • 1 Biomass facility 
  • 1 Natural Gas facility 

When we saw an opportunity to partner with Capstone to help them grow their business, we immediately knew that finding the right cultural fit was not just a necessity, but a must.

Why did Capstone need our support?

Amid the pandemic in 2020, Sherry had to juggle two critical business roles - the head of HR and recruitment. When the renewable energy projects started to pick back up in the wake of the pandemic, Capstone began developing its latest business plan. They sought to grow their internal team, which stood at between 80 to 100 employees, by making some permanent hires

The challenge of finding people to take the business forward, particularly those in the development team, from construction workers to finance specialists, was met with the challenge Capstone faced regarding its limited internal resources. With a lack of people to fulfill their hiring needs, Capstone needed a recruitment partner who would listen to their requirements, care about their business, and be an extension of their brand.

Being a growing renewable energy business, working on major clean energy projects in the Canadian and US markets, the roles Capstone were looking to fill were significantly technical and niche, making talent hard to find. As Sherry was working two jobs internally, she didn't have the capacity to commit to finding the people Capstone needed. This was a growing frustration we were keen to support.  

"They're a growing company, and the positions they hire for are very technical and niche. They didn't have the capabilities of a company with an extensive internal recruitment focus. They only had Sherry, the HR director, who basically has two jobs. She tries to find people they need, but she also has an HR job to do." 

Chandler Robertson, Senior Consultant, NES Fircroft

Knowing Capstone, their challenges, and the people they needed to hire, we began to support them with their hiring requirements. 

How we developed our partnership with Capstone

Our partnership with Capstone began in 2020 when our senior consultant, Chandler Robertson, emailed the VP of development at Capstone about the development search they were conducting. Chandler connected with Sherry and arranged to meet to discuss the potential of a partnership.

During this meeting, Chandler explained to Sherry why it would be beneficial to work with NESF and how we could support their hiring needs. Sherry was looking for someone she could trust to execute their searches for them and be an additional branch of their internal recruitment efforts.  

Once terms were signed and the partnership was officially formed, Chandler was tasked with securing a variety of roles for Capstone, across development, finance, construction, and asset management.

Confident that we could support Capstone with their hiring challenges, we knew they were not just looking for candidates to simply fill a vacancy - they needed more than that. Before Chandler could begin the search, he needed to understand exactly the type of candidate Capstone was looking for.

“They just didn't have the internal personnel so it was more of a time and availability issue to actually do the recruitment. I could be that extension of their business that could clearly focus on recruitment and give Sherry a little bit more time back into doing more HR-related tasks."

Solar Recruitment

"I needed someone who would listen and care about Capstone's mission, understand our needs and ultimately be that arm of my HR department.”

-    Sherry Provis, HR Manager Capstone Infrastructure

Who is the perfect Capstone Candidate?

Capstone regards its people to be its greatest asset. They have created a family-oriented culture of people who share a genuine passion for helping us reach a low-carbon future. 

Sherry’s insight made it clear that this wasn't just a statement; it's something the company genuinely believes in, which is why many of their talent, including Sherry, have remained there for so long. 

She also added that the type of candidate Capstone looks for needs to be driven and excited about the renewables space and what Capstone is doing in the sector whilst having a dedication to making a difference for future generations.  

"It's not for us; it's really not going to make a difference for us but for our future children and grandchildren. That's the difference it's going to make.

“Our culture is a very family-oriented and all-inclusive team. We're really looking for employees who value this type of culture."

- Sherry Provis, HR Manager Capstone Infrastructure

Being the HR manager while simultaneously dealing with the recruitment side of the organization, Sherry is ultimately the face of the business and has played her part in hiring almost every individual employed by Capstone. 

With renewable energy being an increasingly attractive industry for people to transition into, Sherry only considers candidates she believes have a genuine desire to make a difference.

Sherry's passion embodies the type of person Capstone seeks to fit into their culture - a culture that keeps people at the company for the long term. The passion Sherry expressed about the culture of the business was evident to Chandler when working on this project.

With an understanding of the type of candidate Capstone was looking for, Chandler could tailor our talent acquisition services to support Sherry and the wider business.

Discover our Talent Acquisition services

How NES Fircroft approached the Capstone project

Chandler has been and continues to be the catalyst in our partnership with Capstone. So, who better to explain how we supported the Capstone project than Chandler himself?  Below, Chandler provides detailed insight into our recruitment process, which has seen great success for Capstone. 

"When I start a project with a client, I start with a kick-off call, typically with the HR partner and the hiring manager. We sit down, and we discuss all the details with the roles’ compensation, must-haves, nice to haves, and the people attributes we need to look for. We get all the details of exactly what’s needed. Here, we get on the same page of what the process is going to look like.

From there, I actively go out and headhunt. I have a good network of individuals within the market, so that's always my first place to start. I speak to people I know might be interested and use their networks to put me in the right direction of candidates who could be a good fit. 

As well as actively headhunting, I'm using social media and different technology pieces to find people who may not be actively looking, but who are passively on the market and would be open to opportunities."

"My main goal is to target people who are happy in their roles because this tells me they’re committed to the cause. It's a lot of cold outreach via LinkedIn referrals from contacts. Once I get on the phone with them, my job is to ultimately sell them the opportunity. I try to understand where they’re positioned in their career right now and what their goals are. 

I show them how the role is aligned with what they're looking for, and then my job from there, is to guide them through the process. I do the interview prep and debriefing and work closely with the candidates throughout the process."

"We’ll prepare them on what the offer could look like and why they should accept it. We’ll also tackle any concerns and try to alleviate all those issues that happen at the 11th hour. For example, if their family doesn't know about the role yet, or if there are logistical considerations with their children, there are many personal circumstances that we have to navigate. We do a lot of due diligence throughout the process to ensure they have a serious and interest and so when they do get to the end stage, they’re more likely to accept. 

We take this approach at NESF because when we get to the final stage, we have a high success in closing the candidates."

"With Capstone, each search had its own different nuances and difficulties. With development, it's a very competitive market, and you have to provide a really attractive opportunity. In finance, it was very difficult because the searches were very technical on the operation side, trying to convert people and get them to relocate to the areas where these plants are located. It takes a little bit of selling to try to move people from Ontario to Alberta, for example. 

When it came to construction, it was finding someone with a really well-rounded background. Asset management was a unique position where the hiring manager was looking for another hybrid person, someone with a really strong operations background but also the contract management piece. So, that search took a while.

Finding what Sherry looks for in each search has been very different. I customize the search depending on what she is looking for. We do weekly steering meetings and check-in calls to ensure we’re always aligned with the skills she needs to succeed or for the candidates to succeed. 

I know what Capstone is looking for, and I’ve built a good network in that space. But I still have to adapt and customize my search for every role based on their preferences."

What have we helped Capstone achieve?

Over the few years since our partnership with Capstone began, we’ve helped them place over 20 permanent hires into their business. With the working relationship between Chandler and Sherry at the helm, Capstone has grown from approximately 100 employees to just shy of 180 people in roles across: 

  • Development 
  • Construction
  • Asset Management
  • Operations
  • Engineering 
  • Finance

With the ongoing talent shortages in the renewables market and the specialized nature of the positions we were entrusted with filling, we are extremely satisfied with the team’s performance in successfully placing each hire within an average of five weeks from the start of the process.

More importantly, Capstone is also fulfilled with what we’ve helped them achieve, providing them the talent to support their efforts of developing clean energy projects to lower the planet’s carbon output. 

Sherry gave high praise to Chandler, who has been instrumental in the success of the partnership:

"He's always very honest; he's upfront and tells me maybe sometimes not what I want to hear but what I need to hear. 

It takes a long time to build a relationship where someone knows and understands your business and what you're looking for. Recruitment is not an easy thing. It's a very time-consuming, daunting, and sometimes painful exercise.

Chandler knows what kind of personality and the type of person I'm looking for that would fit into the organization."

What does the future hold for Capstone Infrastructure and NES Fircroft?

Looking ahead, we’re excited about what the future could bring with our partnership with Capstone. We are certainly hoping to support them as they continue to grow their presence in Canada, build out their brand in the US, and tap into new markets in 2024 and beyond. 

Chandler will be at the forefront of the future of our partnership with Capstone. Since working with Sherry and the team, Chandler has gained a genuine passion for who they are and what they do. 

Sherry has also given her compliments to NESF and Chandler for supporting Capstone in overcoming their recruitment obstacles and allowing them to see the growth they envisioned. Working relationships like this take time to build, but the results have paid off for both Capstone and us. Capstone has been supported with their hiring challenges, and we've become their first point of call.

We would like to thank Capstone Infrastructure for supporting us with this case study, and we look forward to seeing what the future holds for our partnership with them.


“It's definitely been a really good relationship with Sherry. She's been a fantastic HR partner to work with, and I couldn't ask for anything better out of a project. She's always diligent, follows up with things, and helps me get feedback. She's very good at what she does from an HR standpoint.”

- Chandler Robertson, Senior Consultant, NES Fircroft

Looking to build your renewable energy talent roster?

With energy staffing experience totalling over 90 years, we lend our knowledge to providing long-term recruitment solutions to the global renewable energy sector. Our talent acquisition services have built connections between major energy enterprises and highly sought-after talent worldwide. As a leading recruitment partner within the global energy industry, our specialist support is tailored to offering comprehensive support to the North American and Canadian markets. 

If you're on a mission to enhance your renewable energy talent roster with permanent hires, look no further. Contact us today, and let us navigate you through the talent storm.

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