This report provides a summary of the FiMT summit on ‘Transforming Perceptions and Unlocking Ex-Services Talent’.
Meaningful, sustained, and fulfilling employment plays a key role in helping ex-Service personnel to achieve a successful transition from the Armed Forces into civilian life. Research on the employment outcomes for ex-Service personnel has shown that while levels of employment are high, barriers to successful and sustainable employment remain. These include negative perceptions of ex-Service personnel and difficulties translating military skills and qualifications into the civilian context. In particular, research funded by Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) in the area of employment of ex-Service personnel has highlighted civilian perceptions of ex-Service personnel and their experiences of entering the civilian job market. According to a 2019 survey, while 71 per cent of surveyed UK organisations are likely to consider hiring ex-Service personnel, 18 per cent said they were unlikely to consider hiring ex-Service personnel. This is linked to employers’ views that ex-Service personnel do not have the relevant skills or experience (44 per cent), that they may not fit the culture of the workplace (19 per cent), that their skills from active duty may not translate into a business environment (18 per cent) or that they may have different levels of education to those expected of civilian workers (11 per cent). While the UK public have a broadly positive view of both ex-Service personnel and the Armed Forces, there remains a perception among 64 per cent of the public that ex-Service personnel suffer more from mental, physical or emotional issues than the average person.
Grand-Clement, S., 2019. Changing Our Approach to Veterans' Employment. Summary report for the Forces in Mind Trust. Available at: <https://www.fim-trust.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/20200117-Summit-report-final.pdf>.