Lucid can offer help and advise for forces leavers on the right resettlement package for you. Lucid is also an approved training provider for the MoD’s Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) scheme (sometimes referred to as ELCAS) for current and former members of the armed forces.
Jobs and Careers in Civvy Street
“You can never find the ex-forces people...” – camouflage skills may not be the most transferable!
Individuals leaving the forces are often worried about whether the right opportunity will be there for them in ‘civvy street’. The answer is that the opportunity may well be there, but has to be found. The good news is that ex-forces personnel are in demand in some industries, and it is not just close protection and mercenary roles where skills transfer.
The transferable skills that forces leavers can bring to civilian industry are of two types: the specific skills such as electrical knowledge, mechanical fitting, cable jointing, HGV driving, cooking and so on; and the general skills of management, navigation, presentation and communication. It is often this second more general set of skills that are valued by the oil, construction and communications cabling industries. These industries want reliable people who will find their way to where they are required, manage situations and problems, and work to get the job done efficiently.
Career Networking – Using Friends and Contacts
One of the most successful ways of achieving resettlement into a civilian career is to use friends and past colleagues to help you investigate the market place and find a first job. Companies are sometimes reluctant to take on new staff who they see as an unknown quantity, but a personal recommendation from an existing, and trusted, employee will make them far more confident to give you a chance.
We see this all of the time with telecoms companies where some teams will be mostly ex-marines, whilst another will be mostly ex-royal signals or ex-RAF and so on. Since your ex-colleagues are the only ones who can truly vouch for you as an individual, it is important you make use of them. This can mean keeping in touch with people who go through resettlement before you.
For some careers it is important you get along with your colleagues as you can be living together on-site, and here again a personal recommendation is a big help in getting on the career ladder. The message is “network to get a job in networking”, but even if you decide that communications networks are not what you want to work on you should still network with friends, colleagues and any other contacts you have.
Help Finding a Job
After a resettlement course can we help you find a job? Often the answer is yes, but we can not guarantee this and whether you get the job is often dependent on your performance at interview. Typically, the majority of our resettlement trainees have found a job within six weeks of the training course, many making contacts on the training course that have resulted in work.
In general we find that ex-forces people are well liked by employers in the communications cabling industry. This is particularly true of the ex-forces people who are prepared to work wherever the job demands in the UK, Europe or beyond. If you are looking for a 9 – 5 job where you don’t have to travel more than 10 miles from home, then finding this job typically takes a bit longer.
What do Resettlement People Have to Offer Employers?
As already mentioned above, resettlement people are often in demand, and yet many do not fully appreciate what they have to offer employers. Similarly there are employers who are not familiar with resettlement from the forces and therefore do not appreciate what these resettlement people have to offer either. To convince an employer to give you a job, or sometimes even a job interview, you have to sell yourself to that employer, and to do this you first have to know your strengths and the benefits you can bring the employers business. A good CV is a must, and consider as a forces leaver you may have the following benefits to a potential employer:
- security cleared
- driving license (possibly HGV)
- communications skills
- reliable and well organised
- access to further training (ELCAS funding)
- team player and own initiative
- work ethic – get the job done
- used to travel
- used to unusual working conditions
- specialist skills – e.g. climbing
In particular, the ELCAS funding can be a valuable resource in allowing you to train into a role that may allow the employer to enter a new market area – do not underestimate how attractive this may be to some employers.
Full Board and Lodgings Packages
To make best use of your resettlement allowance and for your convenience, we can offer full board and lodging packages. Please contact us for further information.
We are great believers in treating others as we would like to be treated ourselves, and so we do not use bunk-house style accommodation or cheap B&Bs, but rather nice, clean and comfortable accommodation in beautiful countryside – conducive to a good learning experience.
Investigate the Market – Don’t be a Sheep!
We have trained several ex-forces people who did not spend their resettlement grant with us, but rather came to us a few months or years later spending hard-earned money instead. What several had done was follow colleagues down a route that sounded very promising, only to find that the market could not support that many new entries.
A good example of this was becoming a locksmith. This is a good career for some people and one where you can set-up your own business working from home with a small van. The problem was that the company training the locksmiths had been very successful at selling this concept and their resettlement training course, and were churning out 20 new qualified locksmiths, in the same town, every month. This just resulted in over-supply to a market that may have provided half a dozen or so jobs per year.
Similarly in the resettlement training for the communications industry, many follow previous trainees to the same training providers. This can result in 5% of the training providers getting 95% of the resettlement training, and with such markets the quality of the training and in particular the support is strained. Some of these companies also offer practical on-the-job experience as part of the deal, with the unspoken implication that there may well be a job for you with them afterwards. Unfortunately, many trainees do not do their maths and work out that when the company is training 50 people every month, there will not be jobs for 500 trainees every year!
By way of contrast, rather than looking to train hundreds of resettlement leavers a year, we are comfortable with just a handful or so of resettlement trainees, and that way we can both offer a higher quality of training and more support in finding a job after the resettlement training programme. Another positive side effect of training with a non-resettlement specialist such as Lucid is that you are more likely to join a course where other delegates are already in the industry. Surprisingly often, the contacts and friendships people have made on our courses have been instrumental in finding that first job!
Lucid Resettlement Programmes
We have several resettlement packages available, and we can often tailor programmes to suit the requirements of individuals. Typical programmes include:
- Communications cabling installer – fibre and copper.
- Fibre optic communications cabling specialist
- Copper cabling communications specialist
- Electrical wiring standards and safety specialist
Make Good Use of ELCAS Funding
The Enhanced Learning Credits scheme is extremely valuable to forces personnel as it is over and above the standard MOD resettlement grants. Forces resettlement has long been a difficult area with more being promised by many training providers than is actually delivered, and this has left many ex-forces personnel feeling they have wasted their one opportunity to train into a new career.
Now this need not be the case. Whether you feel you where poorly advised with your resettlement training, or you are happy that it delivered what was promised, you need not feel that this is the end of your resettlement. The Enhanced Learning Credits system allows you to re-train or enhance your training years after leaving the forces at minimal cost to you. At Lucid we have programmes designed to maximise the benefits of the enhanced learning credits, and we are developing new programmes for this ELC training awards funding all of the time so please contact us for details of our latest offerings.
For information on careers and job prospects within the communications cabling industry after gaining qualifications, please see our careers page.