Renewables firm SSE has pledged to support ex-service personnel who are considering a future career in the energy sector.
The company announced a package of support for serving and ex-forces personnel and their families by signing the Armed Forces Covenant.
It includes additional leave for training, support for those with family away on service and recruitment efforts to support ex-servicemen and women considering a career in energy.
John Stewart, SSE’s Director of HR, signed the Covenant alongside Scotland’s most senior RAF leader, Air Vice-Marshal Ross Paterson CB OBE.
He said: “In signing the Covenant, we’re joining over 400 local authorities and more than 5,000 businesses and charities, who pledge to help support both ex and serving military personnel.
“Our association with the Armed Forces can be traced back to the pioneers of our hydro projects, the Tunnel Tigers, many of whom were former members of the services themselves.
“We recognise the value servicemen and women have and many come ready equipped with the skills we’re looking to recruit in the energy industry.
“We’re proud to be a forces-friendly organisation and want to continue to support those working with us now and in the future from the services community.”
The 84-turbine Beatrice Offshore Wind Farm, situated near a former oil field in the Moray Firth, was officially opened by developer SSE Renewables last month.
It is able to power up to 450,000 homes in the UK.
Air Vice-Marshal Paterson joined Mr Stewart and SSE employees who are serving or former services personnel to sign the package.
He said: “I am delighted to welcome Scottish and Southern Energy to join the growing ranks of 5,000 plus employers who have now signed the Armed Forces Covenant.
“This will see particular focus on spousal and veteran employment and actively supporting Reservist staff for a win-win outcome to reward their service and dedication.
“The Armed Forces Covenant is a commitment from the nation that those who serve or have served, and their families, are treated fairly and not disadvantaged in their day-to-day lives as a result of their military service.”
SSE employs veterans and reservists in roles including operating renewable assets such as windfarms and hydro plants to maintaining the flexible electricity grids to transport clean energy.
Jonathan Switzer, SSEN Technical Delivery Engineer, was recruited by SSE’s networks business, SSEN, after leaving the forces in April 2014.
The former Royal Marine spent seven years in the military as a heavy weapons specialist.
He said: “This shows the ongoing support SSE has for the military community in the continuing employment of veterans throughout the business. It also ensures reservists have the time to fulfill their training and any possible future deployments.”