SSE: Recruiting Engineers with Project RPO

SSE: Recruiting Engineers with Project RPO

PeopleScout helped SSE hire hundreds of engineers with project RPO.


As part of the UK government’s smart meter rollout, energy company SSE needed to hire 1,500 Smart Meter Engineers in a short time-frame—in direct competition with all the other energy companies looking for the same talent. SSE turned to their RPO partner PeopleScout to help with this project.

Time was of the essence. The hiring process needed to be transformed, streamlined and made more consistent, as the existing process was time-consuming for hiring managers and candidates alike. Hiring managers were incredibly busy so we needed a process that required minimal commitment.

The next challenge we faced was the limited talent pool of candidates. So it was essential that SSE made an impact with highly targeted communications.


The occupational psychologists on our Assessment Team designed a new online application process that removed the need for SSE hiring managers to interview candidates. Now they would only need to meet the candidates on their first day of training. Our newly designed online 3D model and multiple-choice tests allowed us to assess candidates much more efficiently. And along the way, our Bristol-based delivery center supported candidates at each stage, ensuring that they remained engaged and satisfied.

“We’ve been really pleased with the speed of project set up, the PeopleScout team and the value that they continue to provide.”

Lee Newbold, HR Business Partner – Metering and Smart Transformation, SSE


In the first year, PeopleScout recruited over 900 Smart Meter Engineers with the number of women hired into these roles increasing by 800%.

The average time-to-offer was reduced to 69 days, and new joiners now start after 104 days on average.

We have also increased the quality of the candidates, with 90% of trainee candidates attending the assessment center and 64% passing. 

The application process was nominated for an Innovation Award by the Association of British Psychology.

At a Glance

  • PEOPLESCOUT SOLUTIONS: Recruitment Process Outsourcing
  • ANNUAL HIRES: 1,500 engineers
  • ABOUT SSE: SSE is a FTSE 100 energy company operating in the United Kingdom and Ireland. SSE energy services became part of OVO Energy in 2020.