Leaving the armed forces and transitioning to civvy street can be a challenge. Service leavers are able to access various levels of service support from the Career Transition Partnership and their Unit Resettlement Office.
For those that have been based in Suffolk for some time, you may be slightly more aware of local employment opportunities than those based elsewhere but choose to return to the county post service. Here are a few tips for service leavers that aim to make Suffolk their home once they leave the armed forces:
Job Centre Plus - Armed Forces Champions
Career Options and Information:
* RFEA – The Forces Employment Charity
RFEA exists to provide life-long, life-changing support, job opportunities, and training to service leavers and veterans, irrespective of circumstances, rank, length of service, or reason for leaving. Founded in 1885 and operating across the UK, we have the specialist knowledge and understanding to bridge the gap between military life and civilian employment. We work n partnership with other organisations and employers who, like us, respect and value the unique qualities and abilities of all those who have served.
* National Careers Service - knowledgeable and enthusiastic Advisers will provide you with the information, advice and guidance that you will need to take control of your learning and working life. We also have the experience and knowledge of working in Suffolk (our main office is based in Ipswich) so they will know opportunities within the local area.
We offer advice to help you assess your skills to explore which careers would suit you, provide advice on searching for a job and help you to improve your interview skills or just take a look at your CV.
For more information search online for National Careers Service or for advice over the phone call 0800 100 900 between 8am-10pm, 7 days a week. To book an appointment to see a careers adviser or if you would like to find out more about the National Careers Service please call us on 0845 603 1059
Networking is crucial and Linkedin.com is a great social media tool that connects business people and business issues. Make contacts, learn about industry, find job opportunities, join networking groups for ex-forces and other professional groups and make people aware that you are looking for work. A basic profile, which is more than enough, is free.
East Anglian Daily Times has a very good Business Supplement with Tuesday’s newspaper and equally their website has regular business features and business news stories too: www.eadt.co.uk
The Suffolk Chamber of Commerce published a monthly Suffolk Business magazine which will you informed of who is doing what in local business. The publication is available (free registration) as an online paper-viewer on the business section of the East Anglian Daily Times website http://www.eadt.co.uk/business
Looking at starting up in business
Enterprise Agencies can support people looking at self-employment / start-up business with business planning and developing your business idea. There is a national network of Enterprise Agencies Network, in Suffolk they are MENTA and NWES.
X-Forces is a not for profit organisation that delivers business start-up programmes for service leavers or veterans. X-Forces website.
Job Search Suffolk
For employment vacancies in public sector organisations in Suffolk register and visit Suffolk Jobs Direct
The Poppy Factory : Out-Reach Work Placements and Employment (wounded, injured or sick)
As well as providing work for disabled veterans at its HQ in Richmond, The Poppy Factory uses its unique expertise to help clients all over the UK to find meaningful and sustainable employment within many supportive commercial organisations. The Poppy Factory has a vision that “no disabled veteran who wants to work should be out of work” and aims to become the recruitment provider of choice for its ex-Forces clients and for employers alike. For more information: www.poppyfactory.org
Walking with the Wounded : First Steps (employment support wounded, injured or sick)
is designed to provide access to entry level, formal education or vocational training and to support other necessary costs relating to education or establishing a new career. We aim to support wounded, injured or sick veterans to identify their new career path and then gain the qualifications and tools necessary for them to make a successful move into civilian life.
Royal British Legion - Civvy Street website
This is a fairly well known website for service leavers or veterans, it holds information related to employment support grants too. For more information: www.civvystreet.org