New bombshell reports highlighting the effects of defence cuts have prompted an industry expert to reinforce the message that there is life after leaving the Services.
Harry Dean, director at Leicester-based Gemini Forces, said those facing the prospect of returning to ‘civvy street’ should have nothing to fear about resettling as long as they are given sufficient support.
His comments have come in the wake of reports about 38 long-serving warrant officers finding out by e-mail they are to be axed as part of the government’s defence cuts. The move has drawn widespread criticism at the way it was handled but Mr Dean said, with the right guidance, those affected could face the future positively.
Mr Dean, who served in the Army for 30 years himself, said: “We already know the Army has to make significant cutbacks and I’m sure it’s never easy to end the careers of warrant officers with decades of experience. All will have 22 to 30 years of hard earned experience but the problem for them is that many won’t have thought about preparing for the next part of their lives. While it’s sad to read how this sensitive matter was handled, the important thing now is that the individuals affected will quickly need to think about preparing their futures.”
The RAF has also revealed it is going to reduce its number of trainee pilots by a quarter with up to 100 recruits having to leave the Service. Cost-cutting measures under the strategic defence and security review (SDSR) revealed the RAF would lose around 5,000 personnel to a total of around 33,000 by 2015.
In total the SDSR has outlined cuts of £4.7bn over four years with defence spending falling by 8 per cent. Around 42,000 defence jobs are due to be cut by 2015, including 25,000 civilian staff at the MoD, 7,000 in the Army and 5,000 at the Royal Navy as well as the RAF.
Mr Dean added: “The RAF trainee pilots are also facing the prospect of starting the next chapter of their lives. Preparation for proper resettlement can’t be stressed enough and is something that we at Gemini have a great deal of expertise in, having already helped many ex-Forces personnel make the smooth transition to civilian life. What we do know is that ex-military personnel possess the qualities and transferrable skills to make that smooth transition and we are here to help in any way we can.”
Gemini Forces specialises in helping ex-Services personnel find employment when they return to civilian life. It has helped countless ex-Services personnel make the seamless transition to civilian life, finding employment in an array of industry sectors including Health & Safety, environmental, aviation, facilities management, project management and defence consultancy sectors.
The company recently supported a major event staged by British Forces Resettlement Services (BFRS) to help guide ex-Forces personnel back into ‘civvy street’ which was heralded as ‘inspirational’. The event also marked the launch of www.omnivil.com, the UK’s first fully functional virtual job fair, heralding a whole new approach to ex-military recruitment. Omnivil will bring employers and prospective candidates together in an online forum that has all the facilities currently being offered in the “real world”. Available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, Omnivil will make the career transition process very easy and accessible.
Mr Dean added: “With the prospect of around 42,000 defence jobs going over the over the next four years, the scenario of ex-Forces personnel returning to civilian life and work is one that we are likely to see more and more. Our aim at Gemini is to help the individuals concerned face their civilian futures without fear and make a seamless move from the military.”