SSE 2023 graduate opportunities

Company Company Profile

We are SSE, are you?

We understand that energy is something that people need to live, it is not a luxury, and energy companies like SSE carry certain responsibilities. Central to these is a responsibility to ensure that the energy we supply our customers is as affordable but that we also lead the way in continuing to produce renewable solutions – after all we are the biggest generator of electricity from renewable sources.

We are investing significantly to create a future for more efficient and sustainable energy solutions, from developing one of the largest onshore wind farms in Europe to installing innovative hydro pump storage schemes. We at SSE are constantly involved in many transformation projects across our many business areas and we are looking for innovative, forward thinking graduates to assist SSE’s progress.

As we continue to grow and develop our business it’s vital we have the right development opportunities in place to help our staff prepare for and tackle the challenges ahead. Our philosophy is to grow and promote 80% of our managers and leaders from within the business and specifically our Graduate Development Programme searches out those ‘Emerging Leaders’.

Culture fit with our company is very important, particularly with our main core value of Safety. So, as well as being an ambitious graduate with an innovative mind set you must also be prepared to help us achieve our objectives safely. To do this we promote a strong family theme throughout everything we do. Our safety value encourages us to be our ‘Brothers Keeper’ looking out for others as well as ourselves. Through our Community at Heart days we seek to give back to the communities we operate in by giving free labour or resource to charities, schools and local causes and this has involved thousands of hours of labour from SSE staff. Furthermore we also seek to develop each and every employee so that they can pursue their desired career path at SSE whilst keeping a work life balance because we feel that happy and healthy employees add to the success of our company.

Alistair Phillips-Davies (CEO) “I am exceptionally proud of the SSE contribution to the UK, from our investment in the infrastructure the country needs, our award winning customer service and the efforts our staff make every day to do more for our customers”.

Graduate Programmes on offer:

Power Distribution Programme - designed to prepare you for a future operational or people management role within SSE Power Distribution.

SSE Power Distribution is responsible for maintaining the electricity networks supplying over 3.7 million homes and businesses across central southern England and north of the Central Belt of Scotland.

We own one electricity transmission network and two electricity distribution networks, comprising 106,000 substations and 130,000 km of overhead lines and underground cables across one third of the UK.

Our first priority is to provide a safe and reliable supply of electricity to the communities we serve in Scotland and England and we have been recognised as Britain’s safety power distributor.

You’ll find a variety of engineering roles available in Power Distribution across Perth, Reading and Portsmouth, from Major Project roles to Control Room, Commercial and Future Networks.

Depending on base location and business requirements, your training period may last one or two years.

You’ll have a minimum of an MEng in Electrical Engineering and display strong self motivation and team working skills as well as a genuine interest in developing a career in the energy industry.

Transmission Programme - accredited by the IET and IMechE, and offers professional development towards Chartered Engineer status. The programme is designed to support career development into technical design, or project management roles.

Scottish Hydro Electric (SHE) Transmission plc is responsible for maintaining and investing in the transmission network in the north of Scotland. The network comprises almost 5,300km of high voltage overhead lines and underground cables and serves around 70% of the land mass of Scotland. As the licensed transmission company for the area, SHE Transmission has to ensure there is sufficient network capacity for those within it seeking to generate electricity from renewable and other sources.

SHE Transmission is SSE’s fastest-growing and fastest-changing business, where the core activity for much of the next decade will be construction. Against this background, its priorities for 2012/13 and beyond are to:

  • complete successfully the remaining stages of the RIIO T1 price control process;
  • meet key milestones in projects under construction, in a way that is consistent with all safety and environmental requirements;
  • make progress with projects in development; and
  • ensure it has the people, skills, resources, supply chain and stakeholder relationships that will be necessary to support growth on a significant scale.

You'll undertake placements of 3 – 6 months, gaining experience in major engineering works to establish an interest and understanding in the different branches of engineering and design principles. If correctly authorised, you may also be given responsibility for managing small projects, and supervising craftsmen or contractors.

You’ll find a variety of roles within Transmission; include Cable, Civil, Substation, Protection & Control, and Overhead Line Engineering. Roles are based in Perth, Inverness and Aberdeen. Travel and stays away from base location will be required on this programme.

You’ll have a minimum of MEng in Electrical, Civil or Mechanical Engineering, although BEng may be considered with strong evidence of relevant work or project experience. You’ll display a flexible approach to work and travel, and a strong desire to pursue professional development to IEng or CEng.

Generation Programme - accredited by the IET and IMechE, and offers professional development towards Chartered Engineer status. The programme is designed to support career development in technical design or project management roles, aiming to develop engineering managers and leaders of the future.

SSE has an ownership interest in over 13,000MW of capacity, comprising of Gas and Oil, Coal and Renewable sources in the UK and Ireland. With this portfolio we have the greatest fuel diversity for generating electricity among UK generators and amongst the most flexible. It also makes us the largest generator of electricity from renewable sources across the UK and Ireland.

In addition we currently have a further 10,000MW of capacity under construction.

Initially, you will join SSE’s Engineering ‘Centre of Excellence’, the centre plays a significant role in the delivery of our multi £billion investment programme, and operation of our generation capacity. The team provide expertise across a wide range of engineering disciplines to ensure successful project design development and leading edge asset management activities.

You’ll undertake placements of 3 – 6 months, gaining experience of different asset types across the UK.

We have opportunities for Electrical, Mechanical, Civil and Chemical Engineering graduates based at Perth, Glasgow or West Yorkshire. Travel and stays away from base location will be required on this programme.

You’ll have a minimum of MEng in Electrical, Mechanical, Civil or Chemical Engineering, and ideally have some relevant work or project experience. You’ll display a flexible approach to work and travel, and a strong desire to pursue professional development to IEng or CEng.

IT Programme - When you turn your IT passion into a career, inspiration, innovation and excitement shouldn’t be replaced with ‘that Monday morning feeling’. That’s why, with the IT Graduate Programme, you’ll work across a whole range of diverse business areas so you can find what you’re good at but most importantly, what you enjoy most. During the two year programme you’ll learn the role IT plays in supporting the Business, helping to translate real business problems into usable IT solutions. You’ll have the opportunity to work in a whole host of different areas across the IT function such as emerging technology, infrastructure support, system architecture, application development and project management and you’ll be involved in real projects from the start. Your final 6 months will see you in a substantive role, which is likely to be your secured position at SSE once you finish the Graduate Programme. In return for your hard work, we’ll give you structured learning and a challenging development programme, with ongoing career and development support continuing once you have finished your Graduate Programme. In addition you’ll enjoy all sorts of benefits, rewards and perk.

Ideally, you’ll need to be on track to achieve a 2:1 or above in an IT-related degree discipline. However, if you can show us your passion for IT and digital environments, we’d definitely be interested in hearing more about you. And while we don’t expect you to know everything about IT, we do expect you to have a passion for technology, be a quick and keen learner and someone that is ready to make the most of the opportunities that the IT Graduate scheme provides.

SSE business areas involved with the Graduate Development Programme:

SSE Generation

We are the UK’s second largest generation business, with an ownership interest in over 100 thermal and renewable power stations. We have a total capacity of just over 11,290MW and are the UK’s leading generator of renewable energy, owning and operating almost half of the UK’s total renewable generation capacity including Europe’s largest wind farm.

In addition to our power stations, our Engineering Centre provides both an effective long-term asset management and investment planning capability across our Generation portfolio and a platform for future growth.

The majority of our operations are in Great Britain with the remainder in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.


IT provides the custodianship of SSE systems, and is accountable for ensuring that the systems that the business uses are available and operating correctly. This level of accountability extends across our energy trading platforms, ordering, procurement and finance, network and field engineering systems, through our customer service systems and our cross-group level hardware and software platforms. Our span of responsibility and control ranges from business demand and analysis, through project management, application development and support, governance and infrastructure support.

The SSE group is embarking on a number of significant transformation programmes, both as a result of business initiatives and market demands, and IT is at the heart of them, with major investments for new platforms and technology. These programmes are driving significant change in the business, and IT is seeing an unprecedented demand for new skills and increased capacity, which is creating internal opportunities and partnerships with major systems integrators.

SSE Networks

Our electricity networks transmit and distribute electricity in the North of Scotland and Southern England to around 3.7 million businesses, offices and homes through some 130,000km of overhead lines and underground cables.

Our Transmission Projects division is a focused delivery group that is delivering a wide range of construction projects within the North of Scotland. We have ambitions capital expenditure investment plans to deliver construction and network improvement projects across our Transmission and Distribution businesses over the next 2 years.

SSE Power Distribution makes sure the lights stay on and invests millions of pounds in the electricity infrastructure every year. SSE Power Distribution is currently involved in major construction projects to upgrade the transmission network in the north of Scotland and so support the growth in renewable generation and innovations designed to help us move to a low carbon future.

Apply: SSE

Case Studies

  • Name: Adam Bain
  • Degree: Masters of Electronic and Electrical Engineering with Distinction (MEng) Chartered Engineer (CEng)


Graduate Programme: Power Distribution

Current Projects: As the subsea cable manager, managing 111 inter-island circuits, I am currently responding to a fault on the West coast of Scotland and proposing future installations.

Why SSE? I always wanted to work within the energy industry and SSE struck me as being a great place to work with good opportunities for progression.

Top Tip: Be willing to carry out any work, even if it doesn't interest you to begin with. You never know what you'll learn.

  • Name: Gayle Bennie
  • Degree: MEng Civil Engineering with Architecture


Graduate Programme: Transmission

Current Projects: I am currently Graduate Civil Engineer for construction of Blackhillock 400/275/132kV Substation. This is equivalent in size to 83 football pitches and will be a major hub for energy transmission in Scotland.

Favourite work/project at SSE: Beauly Denny because I was involved in projects such as helicopter stringing of overhead lines, horizontal directional drilling under a river and route selection for abnormal load deliveries.

Why SSE? I chose SSE because of the opportunity the graduate programme offered to train and develop me, through working in a wide variety of challenging and interesting engineering roles.

Top Tip: No matter how unrelated the skills you have learned from a previous job, work placement or hobby may seem, always make sure to confidently sell them in an interview. This will show an understanding of the transferable skills you have also acquired outside of your theoretical knowledge.

  • Name: George Hornsey
  • Role: IT Graduate


"If you are looking for a great work environment, friendly employees, excellent career prospects and a variety of IT areas to test yourself, then SSE is the company for you.”

- George Hornsey

George shares why IT?

"IT allows you to do so much within every area of life, it can be used for learning or something extreme like saving lives. I work in IT because you can do whatever you want to with it, if you work with it properly it can be used to support entire businesses, support applications with millions of users, help others learn when they can’t afford to go to university and in SSE’s case allow the business to keep services up and running and supply utilities around the country.

IT has given me access to a whole new world in which I have been able to help others through my educational years to now working in one of the big six energy companies. If you want to work in IT, ask yourself this - why IT?

… and why SSE?

SSE provides a huge variety of services, from energy/utilities to telecommunications, and to add to this they are the largest renewable energy company. If you are looking for a great work environment, friendly employees, excellent career prospects and a variety of IT areas to test yourself, then SSE is the company for you."

  • Name: George Hornsey
  • Role: IT Graduate


"The support provided and opportunities at SSE have given me the skills and confidence to progress and reach my full potential as an IT professional."

- Sean Jefferies

Sean has joined SSE after leaving the RAF and completing his IT qualifications. Sean believes that training as an IT professional promised an exciting and challenging career, a career that would help shape the technology of tomorrow providing, real value and changes to the business world. SSE has provided him with that opportunity. His time at the company has given him the chance to appreciate the scale of operations that goes on behind the scenes. He is looking forward to being able to explore the vast range of roles and number of different projects across its multiple functions.

Interviews SSE Interview Reviews

Apply: SSE