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:
Career Options and Information
* Regular Forces Employment Agency (East)
The RFEA is an ex-armed forces charity that offers a free lifetime’s job finding service to ALL Service leavers and veterans. The Colchester office covers Suffolk: www.rfea.org.uk, Tel: 01206 815846 (Click here for PDF presentation)
* 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.
Business, Industry and Economy in Suffolk
Key sectors: Biotechnology, Energy, Food & Drink, Agriculture, Information Communication Technology, Tourism, Ports and Logistics, Insurance, Horse racing, Advanced Manufacturing, Creative industries and Public sector. http://www.investinsuffolk.com
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.
The Royal British Legion can also support you through their 'Be the Boss' business start-up scheme. Please click here for more details.
Job Search Suffolk
For employment vacancies in public sector organisations in Suffolk register and visit Suffolk Jobs Direct
Finally, the Lord Ashcroft report that focuses on Transition of Service Leavers has some interesting recommendations (click).
The Poppy Factory : Out-Reach Work Placements and Employment (wounded, sick and injured)
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
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