QUICK march into a new career with help from the military.
Tomorrow is Armed Forces Day when we show our support for those serving our nation.
The Army, Navy and RAF are some of the UK’s biggest employers and offer the chance to study an apprenticeship or degree without getting into debt.
And fresh figures show a 47 per cent rise in firms looking for veterans to fill vacancies, according to the Forces Employment Charity RFEA.
So Forces’ experience is valued in Civvie Street.
Joe Healey served for six years as a corporal in the Royal Military Police. After leaving he launched a successful career as a film-maker with help from RFEA.
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Joe, 32, from Orpington, Kent, said: “Not many people would assume that, as a former corporal, I would now be working in making films, but there you go — we’re all full of surprises!”
After an injury at 16 dashed Matt Smith’s dreams of joining the Army, he trained as a plumber. But in his thirties, he joined the Royal Signals and won an apprenticeship award there.
The Derby man is now a communications specialist and manages transport.
He said: “No two days are the same — one minute I’m out on the field, the next I’m in an office.”
Whether you want to sign up to join the Armed Forces or are coming to the end of your service, here’s what you need to know . . .
Joining the ranks
Army: Ninety-five per cent of soldiers now enrol on apprenticeships, with 11,000 joining each year.
There are more than 40 courses to choose from, and they range from telecoms and IT to building and animal care.
The Army is ranked as the UK’s top apprenticeship provider.
For details see apply.army.mod.uk/what-we-offer/regular-soldier.
RAF: Roles go from pilots and intelligence officers to chefs, nurses and ground crew. Around 2,500 join each year.
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Navy: With more than 100 different jobs, from survival equipment technicians to radiographers, there are 5,000 starters annually.
Around 15,000 people leave the UK Armed Forces every year, to return to the domestic job market, with skills highly sought after by civilian employers.
RFEA: The Regular Forces Employment Association is the oldest tri-service charitable body supporting service leavers.
It provides bespoke support with programmes including TechVets, Forces for London, Military Women, Project Nova and Families.
Career transition partnerships: Career service offers a dedicated employment relationship manager to ease the transition into civilian jobs plus employment fairs and a jobs board.
Job Oppo: Set up by ex-services staff, the specialist recruiters only work with firms that want to fill their active job listings with Veterans.
NETWORK RAIL has almost 600 vacancies ranging from project engineers to resourcing business partners.
Truck load of fun
ATTEN-SHUN! Logistics firm GXO has 2,000 vacancies and is looking to recruit former Forces men and women.
It has positions for transport, warehouse and operations managers, and engineering roles.
Nikki Millar was a warrant officer class two before joining GXO in December last year. She now works as an HR and payroll adviser at its Ted Baker distribution centre in Derby.
Nikki says: “GXO is a very supportive environment for veterans. They recognised my transferable skills.”
Apply at jobs.gxo.com or email GXO’s Forces liaison officer email@example.com.
Lead the charge at work
CAN you lead in the workplace? Former Lieutenant Colonel Neil Jurd, who wrote The Leadership Book, gives his “battlefield to the boardroom” top tips.
- Stay visible in a crisis: In Iraq we were under daily fire, so it was essential to stay visible and to reassure people. The attitude of leaders is infectious – project positivity, calm and kindness.
- Don’t meddle: The job each in your team does is essential and they are specialists at it. So trust them. Support and enable, but don’t meddle – it undermines trust. Instead, focus on the bigger picture of purpose and strategy.
- Be honest: People are drawn to a leader whose word can always be trusted and who behaves with integrity. Be yourself rather than playing the part you think your role requires.
- Lead incisively: Trusting people like ourselves while rejecting those who are different is deeply rooted in us but this programming is unhelpful. For a high-performing team, stop recruiting the same types and create a culture that embraces and celebrates difference.
- Be selfless: Put the interests of others before your own. Help one of your team get a company car, or stay late to assist somebody with work. Do this often but remember leaders need to take care of themselves too.
VEOLIA has more than 300 jobs nationwide including LGV drivers, recycling operatives and administrators.
Go to veolia.co.uk/careers/ search-and-apply.
A foot in both camps
GET a job on Civvy Street without leaving your base.
Contract catering and facilities giant Compass Group has 3,000 vacancies – including 500 at military sites around the UK.
Roles on offer range from catering assistants, baristas, cleaners and caretakers, right up to team supervisors and facility management roles.
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Camilla Howard, chair of the Compass Group UK Forces Committee said: “These jobs really fit with the Forces family population, and we are also committed to redeploying family if they are moved around during service.”
For more details about the jobs on offer, see inploi.com/company/compass/search.