Brexit and the job opportunities created for veterans and service leavers. 

As we have all been understandably focused on Covid over the last 12 months, have we taken our eye off the employment opportunity created by Brexit? Last week I had an insightful conversation with an HR professional from a very British company who employ 4000 people across the UK. They are seeking to recruit a variety of employees at a food processing company that has, from a business point of view, done well during the pandemic. They need to fill the gaps left by many European workers who have moved on to pastures new as a result of the changes brought about by Brexit – and they want veterans and service leavers to help them grow. This pattern, repeated in other sectors such as manufacturing, hospitality, health, warehousing and construction will most certainly see tangible opportunities for veterans and service leavers. Amazon have grasped it, many NHS Trusts are looking to increase their recruitment of veterans and service leavers, and when they open again, pub and restaurant chains will need good hard-working staff.

Don’t judge a book by its cover

Interestingly there is a perception that organisations in some sectors only offer a certain type of job - and this will often turn people off who have left or are leaving the military. Is it right to think everyone at KFC (who employ over 5000 in the UK) deep fries chicken, or that those working at Iceland (who employ 22000 in the UK) all stock freezers? Is that not like thinking everyone in the Army is a sniper or everyone in the RAF a pilot?

JobOppO has a huge variety of roles on offer at huge brands KFC, Iceland and many other organisations who want to employ veteran and service leavers – for the right reasons. While some will undoubtedly be the type of roles you initially thought of, they need good people at all levels to drive their business performance. They need good people to adapt, fend for themselves and roll up their sleeves – particularly given the fact a large portion of their workforce has left or is leaving because of Brexit.

Lift the bonnet

I encourage service leavers planning their transition and veterans looking for a job to lift the bonnet on the organisations within the sector they might like to work in.  Think about the diverse skills and trades the three services require to bring together to operate effectively, then consider which civilian employers may be seeking or would benefit from an individual with such a skill set.

Put yourself out there

So… one man’s loss is another’s gain they say, and ignoring the politics, if there are less migrant workers in the UK this year than in previous years, it means there will be more opportunities for those who remain (no pun intended). I encourage veterans and service leavers to consider every option, in detail, and not be put off by what they think they know about a particular sector or organisation.

Either way, please take 5 minutes join the JobOppO community, have a chat, and give yourself the info you need to consider other options. Hopefully you will also be able to help others.

Good luck.

Register here – JobOppO, Members Only Ex- Military Employment Community

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