The telecoms sector should be looking to capitalise on military redundancies this summer according to a former Army Officer who is now MD of a recruitment agency for ex-military personnel. With the second round of Armed Forces redundancies due to be announced in June, Nick Everard of J1 Consulting anticipates that many highly qualified former servicemen and women will be entering the civilian job market.
“The fact that the Armed Forces are downsizing means that many of the most proactive people are taking advantage of the redundancy packages on offer, as they see limited prospects in a reduced military – and these are the people coming on the market first,” explains Nick. “From my own military service and over 12 years in business since, I know that these highly trained servicemen and women have valuable skills which are directly relevant to areas such as telecoms, logistics and engineering.”
The Strategic Defence and Security Review in 2010 laid out a significant long term redundancy programme. The Royal Navy and the RAF are tasked with cutting 5,000 jobs each by 2015, and the Army is to lose 7,000. Volunteers for redundancy can in effect leave immediately, whilst those compulsorily selected have up to 12 months before they have to go. The Government also announced the closure of approximately half of the UK’s Army recruitment centres at the end of April; this function being largely outsourced to a civilian contractor.
“In the telecoms sector, the best fit is clearly the Royal Corps of Signals and its Royal Navy / RAF equivalents,” explains Nick. “Officers receive specialised communications training at the Royal School of Signals and go on to command a troop of up to 40, responsible for digital radio communications, satellite systems and in some cases, electronic warfare. Royal Signals soldiers opt for one of six trades such as communication system operator, engineer or electrician. As their career progresses they acquire additional skills, and beyond Staff Sergeant are employed in highly trained supervisory roles.”
Based in London though operating across the country, J1 Consulting (www.j1consulting.co.uk) specialises in the vetting, sourcing and placement of ex high grade military personnel into commercial client vacancies. “Because our company is staffed entirely by ex-military, we understand what candidates offer, and which precise military background can meet any specific client’s needs,” comments Nick.
Nick Everard had a 22 year career in the Army, culminating in command of the 9th/12th Royal Lancers from 1996 – 98. He served operationally in Northern Ireland, Cyprus and Bosnia and as an instructor both at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and the Army Staff College before leaving the Army mid career as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1999. Since then he has held senior appointments in the FTSE 100 Capita Group and in World Challenge, a provider of adventurous overseas expeditions to the schools market.