Modern armed forces personnel are trained professionals ready for the workplace, says former officer
MODERN armed forces personnel are trained professionals that can bring a variety of skills to the workplace in Gloucestershire, according to a former officer in the county.
Retired Air Vice Marshall Tony Mason, of Cheltenham, said employers with any negative pre-conceptions about former service men and women should consider the day-to-day activities they carry out and the skills that could be transferred into the private sector.
He said: "It is very important for industry and commerce to know that the modern soldier is far more than just an infantry man or woman. They are trained in a very wide variety of skills and to use their initiative far more than previous generations and that is just at the lowest level.
"Every single pilot, every single officer, for example, has a trade. There are many with junior and middle management skills further up the ranks."
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The Citizen and Gloucestershire Echo has launched a campaign to encourage business and county leaders to recruit former service personnel.
Jobs For Our Forces, launched last month in The Business, aims to make businesses more aware of the skills ex-service men and women can bring to the workplace including strong work ethic, leadership and teamwork.
It was revealed in June almost 4,500 British military personnel had received redundancy letters as part of plans to cut the number of regular soldiers from 102,000 to 82,000 over the next few years.
Mr Mason said: "I think there is a much bigger awareness in the county now about the potential increase in ex-service men and women being available for the jobs market.
"We haven't had this extent of former service personnel in the county for several years and so it wouldn't be surprising if there was no safety net for them."
He added the Honourable Company of Gloucestershire, which he is part of, was monitoring the situation and recruitment agencies in the county were specifically targeting ex-service personnel and offering counsel and support.
Jobs For Our Forces is being run in association with Omega Resource Group. The Stonehouse-based recruitment company has had a dedicated focus on ex-military personnel for four years.
Managing director Alan Beresford said: "We really appreciate the awareness this campaign is giving to what is a very real situation, yet also a very current opportunity for employers."
If you are a business owner or director interested in coming on board with our campaign, email email@example.com or if you would like to enquire about recruiting ex-service men or women, contact Omega Resource Group on 01453 827333.