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Armed Forces Resettlement

15 Jul 2016

Whatever Branch of the Armed Forces you are in, you will bring your own unique set of skills into ‘Civvy Street’

Are you thinking of leaving the army? Have you left the army and your struggling to find a role in Civvy Street? We’ve found that many who leave the armed forces struggle to find a role in Civvy Street. However, the army does often provide you with ‘Resettlement’; many use this to invest in their future career outside of the army - for instance, to spend on training courses or a professionally written CV.

When considering your CV, you need to remember that the majority of HR recruiters will never have spent time fighting in Afghanistan and therefore military jargon on a CV will mean nothing to them. They will simply put your CV to the side, pick another one from the pile, and begin reading that. You need to remember that you are a product, the recruiter is the consumer, and your CV is your sales brochure. You need to make yourself appealing in order to attract the buyer. Very often, they will not spend time reading between the lines to see your value, so make it easy for them to see why they should invest money in you. Highlight your transferable skills and quantify your achievements so they can easily see your true value. Look online to discover what role you would like, and consider training courses for these roles.

REME (Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers)

You have gained mechanical experience gained from looking after vehicles and repairing unit equipment. Many are required to have a degree to enter this Corps whilst others gain a qualification within the role, so this should be highlighted on your CV (for instance, NVQ, BTEC, BSc). Your degree may also hold transferable skills relevant to the role you are applying for.

If you entered the Corps as a soldier you will have had to go through a training course which, along with teaching you skills such as weapon training and fieldcraft, will also have taught you leadership and initiative skills. On your CV, highlight the key teams when you used these leadership skills or worked from your own initiative. For instance, how many people did you lead and what did you achieve as a result?

RE (Royal Engineers)

Your role in the army is likely to have included maintaining routes and bridges, providing landing platforms for aircrafts, building buildings for civilians and members of the forces, and clearing unexploded bombs. You will also have experience in field engineering, the use of explosives, navigating and operating military assault craft.

RLC (Royal Logistics Corps)

You will have gained vast leadership skills when working for RLC. Some RLC officers immediately take charge of up to 60 soldiers. Highlight the number of soldiers you lead, along with any training you delivered and the success of this training to highlight your leadership and training skills. You may also be responsible for a budget for military logistical kits and equipment; state in your CV the size of the budget and how you managed to stay within the budget, along with completing projects to deadlines. Civvy Street will understand these figures and appreciate your control over finances.

Royal Military Police (RMP)

You will have either been in the Special Investigation Branch (SIB) or Close Protection (CP). Within this role, you will have gained many of the skills a police officer should have. It is likely you will have vast legal knowledge which is transferable into Civvy Street. Your knowledge may include: forensics, clerical administration, Human Resources, Research, and Security. All of these can easily be transferred into various roles in Civvy Street.

Key transferable skills gained from the army include: leadership, operating equipment, problem solving, report writing, negotiating, training, management, budgeting, technical skills, teamwork, and communication.

Note: It is not enough to simple write that you have the above transferable skills on your CV. You need to show employees examples of when you have successfully used these skills in your role, as anyone can simply list their skills. However, it does not mean you have these skills; it is your CV’s job to prove to the recruiter you do! You need provide achievements to support these skills, ensuring they are quantified through the use of facts and figures. Remember to minimalise the army jargon!


You may gain qualifications such as NVQs or HNCs. You will also be organised and methodical and you can highlight this on your CV. It is likely you will also have gained a degree of mechanical knowledge along with Health & Safety knowledge. 

Key sectors to apply in:

  • Oil & Gas (on and offshore)
  • Logistics
  • Transport
  • Automotive

Potential roles you could gain after leaving the army:

  • Working in onshore and offshore roles within the Oil & Gas industry
  • Mechanical Engineer Surveyor
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Test Engineers
  • Clerical positions
  • Working with HGVs and PSVs

Potential courses after the army:

Have a look online, as there are so many courses out there to help you develop your skills. Identify the role you would like, or the sector you are interested in going into. View the requirements for the role and see whether you have the skills required. If they require certain courses, look them up online. You may already have an equivalent qualification from your career in the army.

How we can help you discover your transferable skills:

We can provide you with a free CV review: simply register online and call 01932 266166. If you would like to have your CV professionally rewritten, we can match you with an industry specific HR consultant. They will spend time on the phone with you to gain your achievements from you and rewrite your CV to market you to the role you are interested in. We will highlight your transferable skills so recruiters can see your true value and covert army jargon into achievements which recruiters can understand. In some cases you can use your Armed Forces Gratuity for payment of our Professional CV Writing Services. We have been recommended by the Easy Resettlement Magazine, Summer 2014 as they recognise our 12 years of experience in CV writing. 91% of clients gain an interviews from using our services with 79% stating we helped them to identify their strengths and achievements so it is definitely a service worth considering when leaving the armed forces.