A career in the military can be rewarding and challenging in equal measure. Because the life of a soldier is so different to that of a civilian, one of the biggest hurdles facing many service personnel is making the transition back to civilian society after their roles have come to an end.
The good news is, help is at hand as long as soldiers know where to look for it.

Training and employment

Finding the right job can be tough in today’s competitive employment market. However, service leavers can make highly skilled, dedicated and capable employees and they have a variety of transferable skills, meaning they are in high demand among many organisations.

One popular career path for former soldiers is security. For example, there are opportunities to work as close protection operatives, maritime security operatives, private investigators, advanced drivers, medics, door supervisors, security guards and more.

Of course, each of these roles requires candidates to possess the relevant qualifications. For help getting to grips with these issues, people can turn to firms such as Wilplan Training. It has been supporting military personnel in making the transition to civilian employment for nearly ten years and offers tailored training programmes and advice on funding. It also runs a variety of open days, including meet and greets with current students.

Finding the most suitable career path is a cornerstone in any readjustment to civilian life.

Housing

As well as work, housing plays a vital role in helping former soldiers to start their new lives. The Joint Services Housing Advice Office provides free and unbiased help on accomodation choices. As part of the resettlement process, it provides one-day briefings that spouses and partners are welcome to attend. It also runs regional unit or garrison presentations across the country.

For social housing, people can visit their local authority websites and single service leavers can seek help from the Single Persons Accommodation Centre for the Ex-Services.

Healthcare

While in the military, soldiers are used to having their medical and dental needs looked after. However, when they leave it is up to them to find a doctor and dentist. To help them do precisely this, service leavers can visit the NHS Choices website. This resource provides details of all the health services available in individuals’ areas.

Welfare

In addition to these services, ex-soldiers can seek help from the Army Welfare Service. It provides confidential welfare assistance and its main tasks are to offer community support and personal support, as well as to provide the HIVE information service. This is an information network that is available to all members of the service community and it offers information on issues such as relocation, civilian facilities, schools and places of interest.

There are also many ex-service organisations that exist to offer help to veterans if they meet difficulties. The Regimental Association is a good starting point and beyond this there are a number of national and local groups.

It can take some time for service leavers to feel confident and at ease in civilian society, but by taking advantage of the various training and support services on offer, ex-soldiers can make this process much easier.