Job Scheme for Career Break Engineers

| Industrial Sector News

Helicopter specialist takes steps to help former engineering employees return to the profession

Yeovil aerospace engineering company launches job scheme aimed at attracting former engineers back into the industry

Leonardo UK is co-operating with the STEM Returners agency to run a 12-week programme, in which candidates will work on the design and development of aircraft from the company’s Yeovil site. Roles include Structural Design Engineer, Aerodynamics Analyst and System Safety Engineer.

STEM Returners aims to return or transfer experienced engineers back into industry following a career break. The fully paid placements act as a ‘returnship’, allowing candidates to be re-integrated into an inclusive environment upon their return to STEM.

Whilst the scheme helps solve the problem of sourcing talent in sectors that need it, it also has the added benefit of increasing diversity in a host organisation. STEM Returners’ population of experienced professionals who are attempting to return to work are 51% female and 38% from black and minority ethnic groups, compared to 10% female and 6% ethnic minorities working in the STEM industry.

The new STEM Returners initiative in Yeovil follows the successful roll-out of STEM Returner programmes at Leonardo’s sites in Basildon, Edinburgh, Luton and Southampton.

Natalie Desty, Director of STEM Returners said: “This is the third programme we have launched with Leonardo UK and we are very proud to be continuing our work with them to return highly skilled people back into the industry they love. By doing this, we will make vital changes in STEM recruitment practices, to help those who are finding it challenging to return to the sector.”

There is a well-known skills shortage in the UK engineering industry, but despite a clear need for people, there is a group of talented and educated professionals who are willing and able to take on these roles who are being overlooked.

In STEM Returners’ annual survey – The STEM Returners Index – 61% of STEM professionals on a career break say they are finding the process of attempting to return to work either difficult or very difficult, and 36% of returners have felt bias in the recruitment process has been a barrier to them personally returning to their career.

Jonathan Newell
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