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Transferring from civvy street after a career in the armed forces

Transferring from civvy street after a career in the armed forces

The Career Transition Partnership has helped over 180,000 ex-military personnel with the move from the Armed Forces to civilian job roles - and also helped thousands of organisations to employ them.

And today, we’re down at the CTP’s job fair in Bristol, talking to attendees about the opportunities open to them and offering practical advice about getting their feet in the door!

As a Service leaver, finding a new role can understandably be a daunting prospect, especially for someone who has left school to go straight into the forces and never so much as written a CV!

But years of rigorous training, commitment and hard work - in incredibly challenging conditions - means that those leaving the Army, Navy, Air Force or Marines do so with a set of skills which are highly sought after by employers. And you can take our word for it - at one point 35% of the candidates we put forward for roles were from a services background.

Here, we take a look at what those skills are and how they translate to working for a business.


We’d probably guess that around 90% of people include that they are “a good team player” in their CV - which just goes to show how important it is considered to be! But who can claim that they are truly a team player more than the person who has lived with their colleagues in a close-knit environment, and whose success depends on a good understanding of group dynamics as well as the ability to identify the strengths and weaknesses of their colleagues?!


Right from the get-go, life in the forces exposes its members to leadership opportunities - whether of civilians or colleagues. The ability to effectively motivate, manage and inspire a group of individuals in any walk of life is a real talent.

Problem Solving

Because military training encourages individuals to overcome obstacles, often in high-pressure situations, the desire to actively find solutions - rather than just problems - is often second nature. This is very sought-after by any employer, as staff who problem solve are more efficient and trustworthy. Coupled with the ability to think quickly on your feet when it comes to solving a problem, it’s clear why it’s such an important skill.


Communication is something so natural to a lot of military personnel that it is forgotten. When the stakes are high, the ability to accurately relay orders and information is critical. The daily need to communicate effectively when using technical language, briefing a team, or talking confidently to superiors, is something they are used to.


Employers of ex-Service people often remark on their calm and confident manner, even when faced with unexpected changes. Working in a fast-paced environment - something which is very commonplace in today’s world - can be overwhelming for some. But service leavers often possess a maturity which comes with experience of constant change, and come at the task in hand with a can-do attitude.

Specialised Skills

Because there is less of a need to train someone who arrives with good technical and practical skills, the specialised experience of certain ex-military personnel can almost directly translate into certain roles.

For example, former Royal Engineers go on to become bricklayers or civil engineers. Royal Logistic Corp leavers may go on to become Heavy Goods Vehicle drivers in civvy street and working for an agency such as 24-7 Staffing often offers the ideal introduction to civvy street.  

Sometimes, above all, it is the interpersonal skills which stand out for employers. An organised individual with a strong sense of loyalty and discipline, a solid work ethic and a good level of confidence will be appealing to any employer. And these are attributes which Service leavers have in spades.

There is also a wealth of job opportunities for their dependants. In particular the care industry, which offers a level of flexibility, job satisfaction and career development opportunities that has seen it attract growing numbers of ex-service partners. With personal life experience and attitude often considered in higher regard than qualifications, those who have experience of living in a forces environment with their spouse are very well suited to a role in caring.

If you're coming out of the services but haven't been able to get along to the job fair today, do get in touch with the team here at 24-7 Staffing, to see how we can help you in your next career.


Melody Thompson

Published by Melody

about 5 years ago


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