The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) is leading a new venture to offer second careers to military veterans. Part of defence innovation funding, the pilot project is focused on investing in STEM at Dstl.

Many veterans now have a technical background or specialist skills, and Dstl wants to harness those skills, as part of what’s known as the ‘enterprise approach.’

Dstl took an existing platform, Talent Retention Solutions (TRS), a not-for-profit organisation which has worked to retain STEM skills for Government for other departments, and created a Defence-branded pilot website.

The project is led by Dstl as the biggest user of science skills in MoD.


Courtesy Dstl


A Dstl spokesperson said: “We’re trying to work out where these skilled veterans are – it’s a different way to try and reach that community.

“We’re not just offering you a job; this is an opportunity for a second career within MOD, one which includes personal development and qualifications.

“It’s a fairly wide approach – the focus is slightly different. We’re after broad range of technical skills across nine different roles and we wanted a range of applicants.”

It is possible the platform could be extended to multiple Defence STEM employers.

Dstl already employs a large number of veterans.

Nicholas Barsby, Chief of Staff of the Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA), said: “My role is to bring the experiences and skills that I learnt from my full career and try and help out the people here to do their job in delivering innovation.

“I was really privileged to be able to help out, in my final years, with both Afghanistan and Iraq bringing in some urgent operational requirements which directly saved lives.

“It’s that focus and energy which I saw then being applied to help those guys out in the field that I was very pleased to support and doing so again now in a different way.”

The site is now live
, with roles across the Air, Sea and Land domains, as well as niche and scarce skills.


For further information:
www.veteranreturners.co.uk