We are pleased to announce the launch of our brand-new podcast, which went live on Friday, 24 November…Forces Employment Charity: The Podcast. Cathrine Slaatta presents this inaugural episode titled, ‘Keeping motivated on the job hunt’ and features its CEO, Alistair Halliday and Veterans Support Employment Manager, Kevin Grist. 

The podcast explores incredible stories, insights, and resources that empower Service leavers, veterans, reservists and their families in their quest for meaningful careers and fulfilling lives. Throughout the series, we emphasise the importance of resilience, camaraderie, and the indomitable spirit that defines our military community. 

The first episode investigates the hurdles Service leavers and veterans encounter in their job search, exchanging personal stories and motivational strategies. Our conversation delves into harnessing the distinctive strengths of veterans and emphasising the importance of a support system and resilience.  

Alistair Halliday highlighted three key aspects in interviews:  

What are people after in an interview? Firstly, can you do the job? Secondly, do you want the job? And third, will you fit in? Understanding the culture and environment of the organisation you are looking to go into is very important. For employers, it is a different message. This is an amazing talent pool of individuals; you don’t have to feel sorry for them. It is not about welfare or corporate social responsibility; it is just good business, and it is good for the bottom line. If you have Service leavers and veterans come into your organisation, they are going to show all these skills, be resilient, be great team players, and they are going to deliver when you need it or when you least expect it.” 

Forces Employment Charity: The Podcast serves as an extended avenue of support. We strive to offer steadfast assistance by connecting veterans and military families with job opportunities and delivering invaluable training and resources. Join us as we celebrate stories of strength, success, and service!

Consider supporting the podcast by subscribing to the Forces Employment Charity’s YouTube channel. 

Get involved

Participate in discussions and explore a treasure trove of resources within your reach: Register for our newsletter today.

In December, Carols will be sung when the City Veterans CIC hosts its Christmas Carol Service, and the Forces Employment Charity is delighted to be part of this festive occasion as their partner. The service will be taking place on 13 December at the Royal Military Chapel (The Guards’ Chapel) and will be in support of Scotty’s Little Soldiers, who work to ensure long-term support for bereaved military children.

Our work with City Veterans CIC

We are proud to work alongside the City Veterans, as a key partner, whose work aligns closely with the objectives and aims of the Forces Employment Charity. We collaborate to work with the veteran community and employers across the financial and professional services to promote the benefits of employing veterans. Service leavers are also signposted to employment opportunities across the City and support the ongoing collaboration between the military community and organisations.

Scotty’s Little Soldiers

Also, the added arm of City Veterans CIC includes fundraising and supporting many different charities, which very much follows the military ethos of helping others and giving back to the community. This year’s chosen charity for the Carol Service is Scotty’s Little Soldiers to remember those who served and who are sadly no longer with us; particularly poignant for the families left behind at this special time of the year.

About the Forces Employment Charity

The FEC employs 186 staff delivering direct support to help our clients achieve their full potential through 14 different programmes. We provide life-long, life-changing support, jobs, networking and training opportunities to Service leavers, veterans, reservists and military families (including those bereaved) – regardless of circumstances, rank, length of service or reason for leaving. The last 12 months have seen us reaching approximately 25,000 clients; 598 of those being military spouses/partners (and continuing to rise).

We also work in partnership with other organisations and employers who, like us, respect and value the unique qualities and abilities of all those in the Armed Forces community. As such, we have linked with over 9,000 employers, sharing a whopping 115,012 job opportunities.

After our recent Careers in Professional Services event in September 2023, we received feedback on social media:

“A fantastic day. I was blown away by the information I received throughout the day and having the ability to meet and make contacts with people from the Big 4 was invaluable. Also meeting the FEC team and chatting with them, realising that not only can you help me, but you can also help my kids as they transition out of Uni life. Great day all round and thank you.”

Thank you

City Veterans are hugely grateful to the supporters and sponsors of the Carol Service: St James’s Place, Citi, J&B Wines, Hannam & Partners, Partners Group, Saab and the officers and soldiers at Wellington Barracks. Unfortunately as the event is held on MOD property, it is by invitation only. If you are interested in being placed on the waiting list or joining us next year, please get in touch with the team at City Veterans on [email protected]

See also: sign up to our Forces Employment Charity newsletter

Rewarding veterans in business, fitness, sport, and the wider community


The Forces Employment Charity is partnering with and sponsoring the Northern Ireland Veterans Awards 2023!

Northern Ireland boasts a remarkable community of highly accomplished Armed Forces veterans who have transitioned successfully from military to civilian life. These awards are a testament to their outstanding achievements in various fields and serve as beacons of inspiration for future service leavers.

Alana Surgenor, Regional Employment Advisor for the Ex-Forces Employment Programme, said: “Forces Employment Charity takes pride in supporting ex-forces personnel in Northern Ireland to help them understand, showcase and sell the amazing skills that come from having a service background. The veterans from Northern Ireland have always been and continue to be resilient and tenacious with a strong work ethic, that would no doubt, bring a lot to any employer. Forces Employment Charity is proud to sponsor this year’s Northern Ireland Veterans Awards after the success of the first one last year. It is a wonderful opportunity to thank the hardworking and helpful individuals who continue to show how important veterans are within the community of Northern Ireland.”

Individuals of any nationality can apply, provided they are based and operate in Northern Ireland.

If you believe a business, individual, or client deserves recognition for their accomplishments, we encourage you to nominate them for the Northern Ireland Veterans Awards!

We are pleased to announce the launch of our brand-new online community, MyForcesEmployment. This excellent resource provides a collaborative space for our clients to support each other, share their learnings, engage with one another, and access support above and beyond finding that next job. A one-stop shop, MyForcesEmployment allows us to serve our clients better, meeting them where they are.

Whether a Service leaver, veteran, reservist, or family member, MyForcesEmployment offers an extended arm of support for those seeking camaraderie, valuable information, and specific services tailored to their unique needs.


What do clients get access to?

MyForcesEmployment hosts chat groups, exclusive employment articles, extra resources and links out to a wide variety of charity partners.
Chat groups allow our clients to connect with like-minded individuals. Extending across all those we help, MyForcesEmployment provides an open space for all to communicate with their community, those like them, those with differing experiences, and those who have been where they have been.

As always, we strive to give honest, expert advice. Our community provides another avenue for us to support those transitioning and looking to upskill their civilian career. Clients can dive into thought-provoking articles, engaging discussions, and unique resources. With insights from our career consultants and advisors, we can share the wealth of knowledge and ensure no client misses out on our staff’s unique insights, continuing to empower clients throughout their working lives.


A brand-new mentoring hub

MyForcesEmployment also houses our new online mentoring hub. A dedicated platform created to empower our clients as they take the next step in their careers.

Mentoring is a valuable resource we have been pleased to offer to a select group of our clients over the last few years, with great success. Our new online hub allows us to expand this support across the charity, reaching all our clients and attracting more mentors from across a broad mix of sectors to offer their support to the military community.

Transitioning from military to civilian life presents unique challenges. Our mentors understand our clients’ Service careers and can assist in translating skills and experiences into marketable assets, ensuring their mentees thrive in the civilian workforce.

Mentoring is about more than finding the next role. By offering an online mentoring hub, we can provide our clients with a helping hand to build the self-assurance they need to excel. Mentors are vital in empowering our clients to reach their full potential.

Most importantly, mentoring is not just about giving back. Both our clients and mentors have routinely forged valuable connections and grown together.

Former mentor Katherine Jones, Social Value Advisor at Wates Residential, shares her experience with the Forces Employment Charity:

“The value of mentoring programmes is immeasurable and should be encouraged across all industries and sectors. Industry professionals must be able to impart their knowledge, opinions and expertise where possible to ensure that, as a community, we are all growing, sharing and learning. I take part in mentoring programmes to help develop others, explore routes and pathways, problem solve and act as a sounding, impartial and confidential board to an individual. I feel a great sense of pride being a mentor and strive to utilise the opportunity to learn from others and extend my own knowledge and understanding”.


Get involved

Join the conversation and discover a wealth of valuable resources at your fingertips. Register today.

Are you a professional individual with time to give back? We invite you to become a mentor.

We’re delighted to announce that we’re helping record-breaking numbers of veterans, Service leavers and reservists to find civilian career success.

Last year almost 22,000 clients received expert support and guidance from us, spanning services such as CV advice, networking opportunities, job-seeking support, guidance with applications and much more.

The support we offer can be life-changing. Christopher McFerran served for 12 years in the Royal Air Force and sought help from us when he feared his job was at risk.

He said: “I had started a new job just as the first Covid-19 lockdown came into force and, although I thought I had a good career ahead of me, it quickly became apparent that my company was planning on making big changes. I sought the help of the Forces Employment Charity, as the Employment Advisors I have been assigned to over the years have been fantastic. They have always provided great support and updated me with current and relevant vacancies in my field of expertise and within my geographic area. They have also been great at keeping in contact, even if it was just to see how I was getting on and if I needed any support. They are a fantastic team to have on your side! My new role has made me more relaxed, which my family have noticed – big time. I now have a great opportunity to progress.”

Christopher, like thousands of others, benefitted from our flagship Ex-Forces Employment Programme. It provides veterans with career advice and offers access to thousands of job opportunities from employers who value the skills and attributes that ex-Forces bring to the civilian workforce.

The programme is only made possible thanks to generous funding from partners, such as the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund. The charity has recently committed to further funding for the programme, which will ensure many more thousands of members of the RAF community, and beyond, will continue to receive the support they need.

Forces Employment Charity’s Chief Executive, Alistair Halliday, said: “The Ex-Forces Programme is one of our longest-standing initiatives, and it continues to go from strength to strength. We are there to ensure that all members of the Forces community are provided with the support they need to find career success in the civilian world – whatever stage of their career they may be at. We are immensely grateful to the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund for their continued support, to enable us to continue our life-changing work for so many who have served in the Royal Air Force.”

Irene Greenwood, RAF Station and External Grants Manager, said: “Partnership working is an essential part of the Fund’s welfare support to the RAF Family, allowing us to get the expert help to the people who need it. The work that the Forces Employment Charity undertakes is crucial and we are thrilled to be able to contribute, helping to meet the changing needs of the entire RAF Family.”

This year, the Forces Employment Charity is marking Remembrance Day by inviting students to take part in our #PoppyPebbles23 project. 2023 marks the third year we’ve run this popular campaign, with previous participants including Garway Primary School in Herefordshire, singer-songwriter Sophie Ellis-Bextor and blogger Sophie Bradbury-Cox.

The project encourages students to learn about the importance of Remembrance, why the occasion is honoured every year, learn about war memorials and identify what they can do in their local community to mark Remembrance Day.

The pack includes lesson ideas and discussion topics to inspire students to think about their local area and the people around them. Also included in the pack are poems, a list of recommended readings for students, worksheets and activity plans to do in class and at home.

The main activity in the pack is Paint a Poppy. Students are asked to create a design to be painted onto a pebble or use one of the designs included. Once designed the Poppy Pebbles can be painted and put on a war memorial in the local area or used in a class picture!

We want to see everyone’s Poppy Pebbles and there are multiple ways they can be shared with us:
• tweet using the hashtag #PoppyPebbles23
• email the photos to [email protected]


If you would like a copy of our pack, please fill out the form below:



Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn and keep your eyes peeled for your Poppy Pebble!

The Armed Forces Pension Scheme 2015 (AFPS 15) remedy (McCloud) is due to start being implemented from 1 October 2023.

David Roberts, Head of Pensions at the Forces Pension Society, provides some background on the remedy and the Society’s understanding of how it will be implemented…

When the new public service pension schemes were introduced in 2015 (for the Armed Forces this was the introduction of AFPS 15), transitional protection rules were put in place to ‘protect’ those who were within 10 years of their normal retirement age. For AFPS members this meant that Service Personnel who were born before 1 April 1967 were allowed to remain in their ‘legacy’ scheme (e.g. AFPS 75 or AFPS 05) whilst younger members were automatically transferred to AFPS 15. This was subsequently ruled to be age discriminatory and the Government is required to address the issue.

To remedy the situation, Armed Forces personnel who were in service both on or before 31 March 2012 and on or after 1 April 2015 with any break in service of less than 5 years will have the option to elect whether they wish to receive legacy scheme benefits (e.g. AFPS 75/05) or equivalent AFPS 15 benefits for the remedy period (1 April 2015 – 31 March 2022). On 1 April 2022 all serving personnel became members of AFPS15, and all legacy schemes closed on 31 March 2022.

Remediable Service Statements

Eligible members will all receive a Remediable Service Statement (RSS) from Veterans UK by 1 April 2025. Each RSS will be tailored to individual circumstances and will outline the value of the member’s legacy and AFPS 15 scheme benefits that were accrued during the remedy period. We understand that some cohorts such as pensioner members, imminent leavers (i.e. those retiring from the Armed Forces within 9 months from 1 October 2023) and representatives of members who have died, will be prioritised. This is because their pension is (or will be) in payment on/shortly after 1 October 2023.

After the first RSS is issued, eligible serving personnel will receive one RSS per year. Those who have left or will leave the Armed Forces with a deferred pension that is not yet in payment, may also request an annual RSS for free by contacting Veterans UK.

‘Immediate Choice’

Eligible members who have left/will leave the Armed Forces between 1 April 2015 and 1 October 2023 with a pension in payment (including Early Departure Payments (EDPs)), and eligible dependants with a pension in payment in cases where a member has died, are in the ‘Immediate Choice’ (IC) cohort.

Eligible members leaving the Armed Forces before 1 October 2023 will do so on their current pension terms. Once IC members receive their remedy choice, they will have 12 months to submit their election from the date of issue of their RSS. Once a member has made an election, their pension will be subject to retrospective adjustment if they have chosen to receive alternative benefits (i.e. they may have an underpayment or overpayment of benefits which will be paid or recovered).

‘Deferred Choice’

For those not in the Immediate Choice cohort, there is what is known as ‘Deferred Choice’. Personnel who are in-scope will ‘rollback’ to their relevant legacy scheme for the remedy period. They will then be able to choose between their relevant legacy scheme benefits and those that would have been offered by AFPS 15 for their service in the remedy period:

  • Members leaving the Armed Forces within 9 months of 1 October 2023 (known as ‘imminent leavers’) with entitlement to immediate benefits will be sent a RSS as soon as practicable after 1 September 2023. They will have 6 months to make their election. However, if they are unable to make an election prior to their final day in service, legacy benefits will be paid pending their election. If they subsequently elect to receive AFPS 15 benefits for the remedy period, they will be applied retrospectively and, where necessary, the pension/EDP will be subject to adjustment.
  • Eligible members who retire from the Armed Forces from 1 July 2024 with entitlement to immediate benefits will be provided with a RSS before they leave and will have 6 months to make their election.
  • Eligible members who have left/will leave the Armed Forces with deferred benefits (i.e. without entitlement to an immediate pension or EDP) will receive an initial RSS from Veterans UK by 1 April 2025. The initial RSS will not facilitate an election choice unless/until their deferred benefits are due to come into payment. Rather this RSS will simply compare the pension benefits for the remedy period for information purposes only. Thereafter, members with deferred benefits can request one RSS per year if they wish until such time as their pension benefits are payable, at which point they will be requested to make their election.

Default Position

For members who do not submit an election by the end of their specified ‘election period’, the ‘default’ position is that they will receive legacy scheme benefits based on that being the rollback position. In all cases, once an election is made or the election period ends, the choice/default position is irrevocable.

Armed Forces Pension Calculator

In advance of RSS’ being issued, the MoD revised online calculator is now available which allows serving personnel to run calculations to compare their legacy scheme benefits and AFPS 15 benefits for the remedy period.


If you are a member of the Forces Pension Society and have a pensions-related question, you can contact them via ‘Submit a Question’ in their members’ area.

If you are not a member but would like to know more about the Forces Pension Society, visit their website today.

Don’t forget to join us online during Pension Awareness Week to ask your questions and understand more about your military pension.


Rewarding veterans in business, fitness, sport, and the wider community


We are thrilled to share that the Forces Employment Charity is partnering with and sponsoring the Scottish Veterans Awards 2024.

The awards welcome Military Veterans in Scotland who make noteworthy contributions. They also celebrate Reservists surpassing expectations and companies that wholeheartedly support or hire from our community.

Claire Sally, Scotland Employment Consultant for the Ex-Forces Employment Programme, said: “Forces Employment Charity understands and appreciates the tenacity and resilience of those who have served in the Armed Forces. Ex-servicemen and women hold many attributes including their dedication, humility and strong work ethic which is noticed and valued amongst the civilian community. We are proud to support the Scottish Veterans Awards 2024, which celebrates the veterans and organisations who continue to show the value that the veteran community brings to society in Scotland.”

Individuals of any nationality can apply, provided they are based in Scotland.

If you believe that your business, an individual, or a client deserves recognition for their achievements, nominate them for the Scottish Veterans Awards!

Registrations for our Careers in Professional Services event are now open! Gain an insight into the ‘Big 4’ at this face-to-face event in London on Wednesday 27 September from 10 am until 6 pm.

The Careers in Professional Services event is for Service leavers, veterans, reservists and military family members. This event will help you to understand more about opportunities within Professional Services; particularly providing an insight into the ‘Big 4’.

Brought to you by the Forces Employment Charity and kindly hosted by PwC at their London HQ: 1 Embankment Place, London, WC2N 6RH from 10 am – 6 pm.

Register today to attend. Explore what roles may align to your transferable skill set.

Five reasons why you should attend Careers in Professional Services:

  1. Explore the Big 4: Deloitte, EY, KPMG and PwC military programmes and pathways
  2. Demystify the sector and discover the wide range of roles available. Hear directly from recruiters about how to tailor your CV for applications
  3. Informative workshops where recruiters will share tips for your interview preparation
  4. The opportunity to network with hiring managers, recruiters and military community representatives from these companies

Who can attend:

  • Service leavers
  • Veterans
  • Reservists
  • Military family members

What are Professional Services?

Professional Services provide support, advice, and guidance on business or technical topics. They generally perform services in a specialised area of expertise, such as financial strategy or process optimisation.  Some of the main business areas for the Big 4 include:

  • Audit and Assurance
  • Tax and Legal
  • Digital and Cloud Consulting
  • Strategy Consulting
  • Risk Advisory
  • Financial Advisory
  • Internal Operations

Part of a themed series of careers events

Careers in Professional Services is part of a series of events with different themes focussed on giving unique insight, understanding and access to different sectors. All led by the Forces Employment Charity.

Complete our online form now to have a conversation with one of our Career Consultants in advance of this event.

Want to know more about us?

Sign up to the Forces Employment Charity’s mailing list to keep up to date about the organisation’s work.

See also: Events’ page

We’re proud to announce that the Forces Employment Charity has been awarded the Gold Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Award for demonstrating our commitment to helping members of the military and their families.

The Defence Employer Recognition Scheme encourages employers to support defence and inspire others to do the same. The scheme encompasses bronze, silver and gold awards and recognises companies for initiatives such as employing veterans, supporting personnel transitioning out of the Armed Forces into civilian life, and providing flexibility for reservists.

At the Forces Employment Charity, many of our staff are members of the military community, both veterans and spouses. We recognise the contribution that the Armed Forces and their families make to our nation and signed the Armed Forces Covenant to demonstrate our support.

Our commitment to supporting Service leavers, veterans and their families includes:

  • Attendance at all CTP job fairs.
  • Attendance at, and promotion of, Armed Forces Day and Reserves Day.
  • Improving our HR offer to Reservists and Cadet Force Adult Volunteers.
  • Chairing the Veterans Employer Advisory Board.
  • Chairing the COBSEO Employment Cluster and feeding our findings to the MoD via the Office for Veterans Affairs.
  • Chairing the COBSEO Subcluster for spousal employment, working closely with all three Family Federations.

Alistair Halliday, the Forces Employment Charity’s chief executive, said: “We are delighted to achieve ERS Gold status. This is a testament to the hard work of all our staff and recognises the charity’s considerable achievements in supporting the Armed Forces community since 1885. We’re fully committed to increasing the support we offer, ensuring veterans and their families receive the assistance they need to reach their full potential and feel successful and fulfilled in their civilian careers.”

Dr Andrew Murrison, Minister for Defence People, Veterans and Service Families, said: “I would like to thank all the organisations that have been recognised in this year’s awards. I’m delighted that we have seen so many organisations recognised with a gold award. Their continued support demonstrates the unique benefits and strengths that our Armed Forces community can bring to the workplace.”

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