Competition Sponsor: UK Research and Innovation
Every year, ~1,200 veterans leave the military after the age of 50 and look for civilian work that they value. However, many struggle to navigate the civilian job market and may spend years in low paid or precarious work before they find a second career. Simultaneously, while employers value the skills and experience that come from long military service, they are often uncertain about how to bring in and develop the talent of 50+ Service leavers. A career pipeline that can better match 50+ Service leavers with employers who can make good use of their skills is therefore urgently needed and will ensure that military-acquired skills continue to contribute to the UK economy.
In partnership with the Officers Association and Forces Employment Charity, I will work with 50+ Service leavers in building a transformative career support service that will help veterans find a ‘new mission’ in the civilian workforce, delivering an effective solution that allows veterans to gain at least five extra years of healthy and independent living. The project focuses on long-service veterans who have been underemployed since leaving the military and could benefit from personalised and peer-to-peer support like mentoring, job trials and career planning. By tapping into the comradeship and shared experience of military service, 50+ veterans will help one another in building successful civilian careers. More widely, this project will provide a model for supporting older jobseekers in building second careers.