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Tapping into ex-forces skillsets at the Career Transition Partnership events

  • Publish Date: Posted 11 months ago
  • Author: James Kenealey
Representatives from the Morson Group attended the Career Transition Partnership event at the AJ Bell Stadium in Salford to engage with service leavers looking to build their careers in the civilian world following the armed forces.
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The Career Transition Partnership (CTP) is a partnership between the Ministry of Defence and Right Management Ltd who provide resettlement services to those leaving the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force and Marines.

As a proud holder of the MoD Armed Forces Covenant Gold Award, Morson Group’s dedicated ex-forces recruitment arm, Morson Forces, is focused on securing skilled employment for ex-forces personnel and supporting their transition into civilian life. For more than 20 years, Morson Forces has been supporting clients worldwide with skilled contract and permanent staff and helping veterans from all sections of the armed forces transfer their skillsets into the civilian world.

Our investment into the Morson Forces branch of our wider organisation has seen us place candidates in some of the most complex and niche roles within privatised MOD contracts, as well as in other industries such as aerospace, marine and nuclear. While working with the MOD on the development of a new challenger tank, we were able to identify individuals with specific experience of working on military tank vehicles and met 100% of the job criteria required for each role placed.

We’re also uniquely positioned within our industry as being the recruiter of choice for the spouses and partners of ex-service personnel. Many partners put their own careers on hold while supporting the career of a military worker, which makes seeking employment in the civilian world a major challenge. Our Morson Forces programme is tailored to ensure that, as well as supporting those who previously worked in the forces, we also seek to find roles suited to the skills their partners or spouses possess.

Having developed Morson Forces over the course of several years, we now have a collection of preferred partners who, through our programme, have vast experience of hiring ex-military personnel and have benefitted from their skills, expertise and values. These include MAG (Manchester Airports Group), Sir Robert McAlpine, Atlas Elektronik UK and Tata Chemicals Europe, amongst others.

With Morson Forces representatives attending approximately 70-80 CTP events each year, our brand has now become synonymous with the partnership and through our development and nurturing of the partnership, Morson Forces has been awarded Official Employer Status with the CTP, meaning we now career manage ex-forces individuals into employment for our various clients. The team is made up of a number of ex-military personnel who understand service leavers transferrable skills, challenges and needs and are therefore able to place people into roles for which they are perfectly suited. Pat McMullan, Account Manager for Morson Forces who specialises in the aerospace, defence and marine divisions, is one such person:

“I joined the RAF in 1978 and spent just short of 30 years there, coming out in 2004 as a Chief Clerk. I went through the ranks, from working in the post room through to Head of HR in one of the big RAF stations in Norfolk.

The CTP events have been the backbone of Morson candidates within the aerospace, defence and marine divisions. I’ve been doing it for 15 years, but Morson has been affiliated with the CTP for about 25 years. The candidates here provide us with a short-, medium- and long-term pipeline. Service leaver numbers ranges from 12-15,000 per year, and the capabilities of the candidates is colossal. It’s really a goldmine of candidates and skillsets.

Coming from an ex-forces background, I’ve been through that whole transition. I’ve made mistakes and made bad decisions. Couple that with the experience I have with the Group and clients, I can pass on my experiences to candidates and also show them the capabilities of the Group.

A lot of the time, these events are about general awareness. From a Group perspective, it’s about making them aware of our capabilities and drawing out the candidates’ skillets. The transferable skills comment that was made when I left the RAF was almost a throwaway comment, but today it’s different. The guys have a basic foundation and professional knowledge, and our job is to open their horizons to their capabilities and show them that they can go into different sectors, even in roles they don’t think they’re capable of. The thing I love is being able to open their eyes and give them confidence that it’s an employee market out there.”

Martin Goodwin is a Trainee Project Planner for Waldeck, one of the engineering, construction and asset management consultancy service within the Morson Group:

I did 30 years to the day as RAF aircraft technician, working on large aircraft and fast jets all around the world. I then moved into training in the last 8 years of my career and then moved into a training management role with BAE Systems. I then moved over to Northrop Grumman on TUPEE as BAE Systems left a specific project I was working on. For the last couple of years I was working as a consultant at RAF Waddington. I couldn’t get signed on due to financial constraints so at the age of 63 I was unemployed. I looked around, saw a job at Waldeck, for which I thought I had 40% of the skills required, so speculatively I went for an interview. I was honest, laid myself on the line. I didn’t tick majority of the boxes technically but what they saw was a lot of transferable skills. I got offered the job almost immediately.”

This demonstrates the untapped potential that ex-forces personnel have in civilian employment, which is often unknown to both themselves and prospective employers:

“Forces personnel in general don’t understand the transferable skills they’ve got. They’ve done stuff all over the world against time and budget constraints, they always just do it and make those ends meet. Businesses are waking up to the fact that those transferable skills are a goldmine to be tapped into and I’ve been very impressed with the standard of people I’ve spoken to at the CTP.”

Our commitment to the forces community

Through Morson Forces, we’ve made a commitment to ensuring that once a service leaver begins a new role – either as a Morson employee, permanent staff or contractor with one of our clients – they have access to the support they require through our expert HR and care support teams. There is nothing else like Morson Forces on the market, which not only makes us best placed to welcome ex-military people into our Group, but ensures we are able to gain all the necessary knowledge and insight required to give these individuals the best chance at starting the next chapter of their lives.

Our armed forces pledge: 

  • Delivering a step-change in support for veterans and their families

  • Maximising veteran employability

  • Making sure veterans and their spouses receive high standards of support

Our commitment to the ex-forces community also extends to charitable activity. Teams from Morson Technical Services take part each year in the annual Walking with the Wounded Cumbrian Challenge, Walking with the Wounded is a charity which targets those veterans who have fallen the furthest following their service; men and women struggling with mental health issues, unemployment, homelessness and more. By providing early intervention programmes and speeding up access to therapy, they help change the lives of veterans and their families. Morson is a proud partner and sponsor of the event.

If you’re an ex-forces veteran and would like to find out more about how we can help you to reach your potential in a civilian career, get in touch with us by emailing