MEMBER NEWS: PD&MS Group announce new returners programme in Scotland to support STEM professionals back into industry

March 20, 2024
MEMBER NEWS: PD&MS Group announce new returners programme in Scotland to support STEM professionals back into industry

PD&MS Group is to launch a new returners programme to help STEM professionals in Scotland who have had a career break return to the industry.

In partnership with STEM Returners, PD&MS will host the programme at their sites in Aberdeen and Glasgow where roles will include Control & Instrument Designer, Piping Designer, Process Engineer and Structural Designer.

PD&MS is a leading multi-disciplined engineering company offering specialist services to the oil and gas, drilling, production, renewables and marine industries. It is hoped the programme will enable STEM professionals to return to work, improve diversity and inclusion and help fill a skills gap in the engineering sector.

PD&MS is also offering further returner roles as part of their involvement in Global Underwater Hub’s membership network, which recently announced a STEM Returners programme in partnership with Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB).

Annual research from STEM Returners (The STEM Returners Index) shows the challenges people face when trying to return to work following a career break, with recruitment bias shown to be the main barrier to entry. It also shows women trying to return to industry are more likely to experience recruitment bias than men.
STEM Returners’ programmes aim to eliminate these barriers by giving candidates real work experience and mentoring during their placement, as well as supporting them to seamlessly adjust to life back in work. Applicants, with any length of career break, will undertake a fully paid 12-week ‘returnship’ which allows candidates to be reintegrated into an inclusive work environment.

Natalie Desty, Director of STEM Returners said: “We know the engineering sector is facing a significant skills gap, but there is a talented pool of people who could help fill that gap but are often overlooked due to a gap on their CV.

“We are very proud to be entering this new partnership with PD&MS, to return highly skilled people back into the industry they love. Only by partnering with industry leaders like PD&MS will we make vital changes in STEM recruitment practices, to help those who are finding it challenging to return to the sector and improve diversity and inclusion.”

Mark Davison, Group VP Engineering & Technical Services, PD&MS Group added: “The skills shortage is a huge challenge, across all industries and sectors, and we’re seeing the knock-on impact this has on our engineering roles. We want to ensure we have as diverse a range of people within our engineering teams to enhance our capabilities and skill sets and we recognise that STEM returns represent a large pool of highly skilled personnel that will be a perfect fit into our organisation. Not only that, but we’re incredibly passionate about supporting the industry, and those within it, to help build the future talent that is needed. We’re confident that our collaboration with STEM Returners is going to allow us to continue to build that talented workforce.”

Since STEM Returners first launched in 2017, more than 475 STEM Returners candidates have joined programmes across the UK. To view STEM Returners opportunities, visit

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AREG has played an important role in the growth of Scotland’s renewable energy sector, engaging the supply chain and developing the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre. However, we are only at the very beginning of the transition that AREG was established to both lead and support so there are still opportunities for companies to get into the constantly evolving renewables supply chain. We look forward to continuing our work together as renewables builds on its place as Scotland’s main source of power, and as we seek to deliver real change in the crucial areas of heat and transport.

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Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce has worked closely with AREG since its formation. The recent progress in the developments of offshore wind projects by Equinor and Vattenfall are as a result of the work of the group over many years. The north-east is known as the oil and gas capital of Europe. At the Chamber, we believe the region must evolve its position to being recognised as the energy capital. Whilst hydrocarbons will continue to be essential in driving our economy for years to come, the generation of renewable resources will play an increasingly important role in providing cost-effective power, innovative development and economic growth.

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The enthusiasm and dedication of the early group that would become AREG was fundamental in us choosing to launch All-Energy in Aberdeen. The first tiny show was held in 2001, and AREG’s Chairman at the time, Jeremy Cresswell, played such an active role that I often describe him in terms such as All-Energy’s ‘midwife’. All-Energy is now the UK’s largest renewable and low carbon energy exhibition and conference in terms of number of attendees, space booked, and number of exhibiting companies. As AREG became firmly established, their presence and support for the event grew spectacularly over the years. We thank them most sincerely for their invaluable input.


Vattenfall has forged a strong working relationship with AREG through the development of the European Offshore Wind Deployment Centre. AREG has worked tirelessly on behalf of the North East and it can take enormous credit for the growth of sustainable energy in the region and the path it has cleared for the region to capture further investment.


Aberdeen City and Shire is emerging as a key location for renewables by successfully transferring its world-class oil and gas expertise into the sector and AREG has done much to advance this through a broad range of initiatives. It has acted as a catalyst in driving further investment in the local economy by engaging with companies, Government, public bodies and existing projects and we have been pleased to support their efforts. Scottish Enterprise will continue to engage with AREG as we increase Scotland’s use of renewable energy.

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