Leonardo launches pilot STEM Returners programme across the UK

30 October 2020

As part of Leonardo’s commitment to recruiting the best candidates for its engineering vacancies, we are excited to be partnering with STEM Returners on a brand new pilot initiative.


STEM Returners offers programmes to help highly qualified and experienced candidates restart their career following a break, and will be working with us to employ engineers whose skill sets are needed to fulfil several roles across our long-term programmes.

Leonardo Engineering and Projects Director, Paula Clarke, says: “We recognise that returners often face an insurmountable barrier to returning to work after a career break, be that because of a perception of a deterioration of skills or a lack of flexibility. This ground-breaking programme shows career break returners that Leonardo values the skills they have gained whilst out of industry by enabling a return to their career in a flexible and inclusive way.”

Dr Carol Marsh, Deputy Head of Electronic Engineering at Leonardo, who was awarded an OBE in 2020 for services to diversity and inclusion in electronics engineering, is a returner herself. She worked for the company as a Digital Engineer at the start of her career, and after moving on to work at other companies, she took a four-year career break in her 40s to study a Doctorate of Engineering in System Level Integration, before returning to Leonardo.

Carol hopes that the STEM Returners programme “will increase the diversity of Leonardo’s workforce, by helping returners to reframe applicants’ perception of their own abilities, based on the positive contribution they can make as experienced professionals, who are bringing transferable skills that they have acquired through other roles.”

The programme is open to men and women who have taken any length career break, as well as those who wish to transfer sectors but lack the relevant work experience.

Successful applicants will join a paid 12-week structured return to work programme, following which, job offers may be made to those who have shown the necessary skills and aptitude. This is not just work experience, but a genuine opportunity to restart your career.

“If you’ve been away from your STEM career and are looking for an opportunity to return, our returners programme offers you the support needed to develop your technical and professional skills,” adds Paula. “As well as offering one-to-one mentoring and a learning environment like no other, at Leonardo you will also get involved in projects that will really make a difference.”

“There are lots of initiatives to cater to the next generation of STEM workers, but the STEM Returners programme is aimed specifically at those wishing to go back to engineering mid-career,” explains Natalie Desty, Director of STEM Returners.

Nerys Thomas, Leonardo’s UK Head of Inclusion and Diversity, says: “We’re excited to be launching the STEM Returners Programme. We know there is a large pool of skills and talent looking to return to work and we are ready to support you in taking that step. We offer an array of exciting roles across our UK sites, with flexible working options to help you achieve the perfect balance between career and home life, and to ensure your smooth transition back to the workplace. We are looking forward to hearing from you and welcoming you to our company.”

Candidates wishing to apply for the returners programme can do so by visiting www.stemreturners.com/company/leonardo.

A World of Opportunity

A World of Opportunity

Leonardo offers job opportunities across the UK covering a variety of job roles at all levels – from interns and apprentices to highly qualified professionals – including engineers, cyber security experts, programme and project managers, business analysts and many more.