Success Story

Staffing The Largest Offshore Development in the UK

BACKGROUND: Our client is a global engineering company with over 15,000 employees. They provide products, systems and services to the oil and gas industry to help the world meet its energy needs.


In 2014, our client won a five-year contract to provide Hook Up and Commissioning (HUC) services for an oilfield development as well as the Maintenance and Modifications scope which would follow on from the HUC phase.

The oilfield is located in international waters on the UK Continental shelf in the North Sea and it was the largest new offshore development in the UK in over a decade.

Our client needed 900 immediate hires to be vetted and ready to go when required, as well as, 200 onshore personnel for pre-construction and construction phase and 200+ commissioning.

We are the most followed brand amongst our peers with over 400,000 social media followers and rising; our total talent solution offering, combined with our strong brand presence in the region and online led to the client choosing NES Advantage Solutions exclusively as their workforce solutions partner.


To tackle this challenge, NES;

  • Developed, with our client, a comprehensive recruitment strategy document, giving all stakeholders confidence in the plan. The plan encompassed a lean methodology, removing labour intensive manual processes and time wasting activities, which created both a significant increase in efficiency and a reduction in risks.
  • Immediately mobilised a team of experienced recruiters to work on site which both facilitated seamless integration and a close working relationship with the HR leadership team, including their training and logistics division.
  • Identified a pool of over 3,000 suitable candidates for the Construction phase and 625 for the Commissioning work.
  • Thoroughly vetted all candidates, ensuring they had the relevant certificates and qualifications, following which we submitted them to the hiring manager for review.
  • Organised focused “invitation only” assessment open days across 4 locations in the UK to interview the prospective candidates and progress the strongest to a shortlist.
  • Interviewed and assessed over 1,500 candidates using software that randomly generated test papers to ensure candidates did not share questions / answers.
  • Developed the concept for a software tool to interface between departments and suppliers for smooth pre-mobilisation communications.
  • Completed pre-mobilisation collection of documents and certifications.
  • Issued electronic contracts and successfully on-boarded all preferred candidates on behalf of the client.
  • Provided weekly operational and monthly management reports throughout the entire process.
  • Assessed the client’s use of ‘People Fluent’. As a technology neutral vendor, we were able to improve their processes and provide insightful data reports that enabled the client to gain visibility of candidates during each stage of the hiring process, to build an effective talent pool for each discipline and to identify any hold-ups in the process – saving time and money.

Our solution delivered three specific benefits:


All candidates were treated equally and were subject to the same process. Due to the volume of hires, we ensured that the test questions were randomised so that candidates couldn’t copy each other. This process gave our client peace of mind that the best resource was being hired.


Ensuring the quality of the resource reduced the amount of re-work associated with unsuccessful hires. By engaging with the client at an early stage we were able to identify cost savings in the process and continued to do so throughout the project.


Compliance is extremely important to us and we ensured that during this project, no candidate was mobilised without a contract in place, or without their certificates being up-to-date. In addition, all candidates were trade tested and referenced.

It has been great to work with NES. They are very responsive, know the business, are easy to communicate with, and really care about delivering the best possible service. NES are an example of being agile - keeping up with the changes and surprises whilst delivering is not an easy task.
Construction Project Control Manager


As of March 2019,... We’ve saved our client over £1,700,000 against market rates We’ve achieved zero missed mobilisations We’ve achieved 100% compliance, which on a scale of this magnitude is completely unheard of.

All of this was possible because we placed the right team with the right technologies and engaged with the client at the earliest possible time to allow for good planning.

By handling the entire recruitment process, we greatly reduced the stress on our client and enabled them to focus entirely on the project execution.

As a result of this project’s success we continued our exclusive supplier status and handle 100% of their permanent and contract recruitment in the UK.

CV acceptance rate
Technical verification
Trade test pass rate
Interview pass rate
Medical & drug screen pass rate
Contract compliance
Offers declined
Candidate drop out

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