High retention rate at engineering firm

A section of the FES head office. Formed 20 years ago, the business is one of the leading providers of fluid transfer solutions to the offshore industry. Picture by Simon Williams.
A section of the FES head office. Formed 20 years ago, the business is one of the leading providers of fluid transfer solutions to the offshore industry. Picture by Simon Williams.

Ashington-based engineering firm FES has reported exceptional staff retention levels – with 62 per cent of its staff working there for five years or more and a quarter giving more than a decade of service.

And a handful of staff are approaching 18 years with the business, it has calculated, as it prepares to mark its 20th anniversary later this year.

Since 2014, the oil and gas supply chain business has recorded an average staff retention rate of 96 per cent, despite operating in a sector that has seen mass redundancies amid falling oil prices in recent years.

FES supplies fluid transfer systems to oil and gas clients across the globe from its base in North Seaton Industrial Estate.

It has managed to avoid any redundancies. A range of products used globally and designed to improve efficiencies and cost-effectiveness are key to its success.

Business services manager at FES, Mark Latimer, said: “We’ve certainly been able to keep our staff busy and give them job security in recent years.

“Our competitors have been laying people off and cutting hours down as the oil price has dipped, but this hasn’t happened at FES.

“Although our staff reproduce the same product lines, each project comes with different scale and tolerance requirements, so the work is varied.

“We also maintain a pleasant working environment, thanks to the expansion of our Ashington site by 12,000sq ft in 2014.”