OUR IMPACT 2016 - 2017

We exist to help officers find employment and to provide advice and financial support to relieve hardship amongst those who have held a commission in the Armed Forces, their families and dependants.

Transitioning from a military to a civilian career brings particular challenges. We support former officers through this change to help them achieve sustainable employment in a role that feels right and takes into account individual circumstances, aspirations and skills.

We recognise that leaving the Armed Forces is just the start of a transition journey. It's a decision no officer takes lightly. We offer support by providing impartial, practical advice and knowledge each step of the way. 780 career consultations were delivered last year.

We understand that productive engagement with the OA community works. Employers, OA Alumni and supporters each contribute to help job seekers gain valuable knowledge and advice which contributes to help job seekers build their own networks. 1,532 jobseekers attended our knowledge based networking events.

We aim to deliver core services in a format that are accessible to all. We launched our Employment App in 2016 and deliver webinars, online careers fairs and remote access consultations to registered job seekers. 1,945 officers downloaded our Employment App. 20,600 webinar views.

We champion the skills and qualities of the officer job seeker. We de-mystify preconceptions around the officer job seeker and aim to provide parity as opposed to priority with employers in the recruitment field. 900 plus jobs were posted throughout the year on the OA Executive Jobs Board – jobs geared to the officer job seeker.

"It's exciting to start a new business, but also a little daunting. However, the OA helped me to realise that the many skills I gained in the Royal Marines are valued in the private sector."

Neil's Story

"Thanks to the OA Career Consultant advice and support, I understood my career options and identified the job roles I wanted.

In 2009 I joined the Royal Marines and served for eight years. In that time I completed a tour of Afghanistan, was part of the Lead Commando Group and became head of Tactical Development at 3 Commando Brigade HQ. I enjoyed being in the Armed Forces, but when my wife became pregnant I decided to prioritise my family and left in 2017.

At this time I was unsure of my employment options, so I approached the OA for a career consultation. The OA consultants encouraged me to network and helped me to identify business management as my preferred career.

Via my network I met the owner of a private investment business who wanted to start a recruitment agency. I felt the role was ideal and after interview I was hired. I am now the CEO of Crucial Group."

We engage with employers so that they understand how to recruit veterans and are able to recognise the business case for doing so.

Working with Employers

We engage with employers so that they understand how to recruit veterans and are able to recognise the business case for doing so.

Last year we delivered a programme of workshops and forums, supported by research and insight, to connect employers with Service leavers. Every activity undertaken by employers, including military employment activities, will have associated costs and benefits, challenges and considerations. We work with employers to help them develop the business case for employing veterans.

And our employer-led campaigns aim to highlight the benefits and value of employing veterans. We challenge employers to look beyond rigid hiring criteria to recognise the value Service leavers can bring to their business.

Veterans Work

This year we worked with Deloitte and The Drive Project to highlight the key findings of our published research, Veterans Work. We created three short, unique films using a combination of celebrities, business leaders and veterans to challenge stereotypes and perceptions of veterans.

View the films at: www.veteranswork.org.uk

Life can be tough, and anyone can quickly find themselves in a distressing situation. We are here for former officers, their families and dependants in those challenging times, to help make the pressures more manageable.

We provide impartial advice. Our Benevolence Team provides confidential and impartial advice to those in need of help. We have dealt with 1,107 cases in the last year, providing welfare advice, signposting to other organisations and accessing financial support.

We offer financial support. We award grants for beneficiaries needing financial support, which can be one-off or regular payments, and quite wide-ranging, depending on the person's needs. Over the last year, we have paid out £1,369K in grants. Regular grants can go towards the general cost of living, as well as financing care support. Our one-off payments have covered many costs, including car repairs, funeral costs, rent arrears and white goods.

We work with other charities. Beneficiaries’ needs can often be complex, requiring the support of multiple organisations. We work with other charities to deliver the best possible results for beneficiaries. Over the last year, 30% of all grants paid to beneficiaries came from funds provided by other charities. This co-operation helps us to work efficiently and maximise the grants available to beneficiaries.

"The OA has helped me in so many ways. The main thing to me is that I can stay in my own home. My children, they can come for love, not duty; that is so important."

Bryony’s Story

Bryony was one of the first female officers to graduate from RAF College Cranwell, and was stationed around the world.

Bryony slipped on the stairs at home and fell, breaking her back, neck and spinal chord. She lay paralysed on the floor for 30 hours before receiving medical treatment. Bryony spent 12 weeks in the Intensive Care Unit followed by nine months recovering on a spinal injury ward.

Bryony contacted the OA, having first heard of the charity through her mother, who was a WRAF officer during the Second World War. An OA Hon Rep visited Bryony at home, and assessed her needs. This information was sent to the OA Benevolence Team, which awarded Bryony two means tested grants and organised:

  • A stair lift
  • A new lightweight electric wheelchair
  • Garden maintenance
  • A TV in her bedroom, because she is sometimes bedbound.

Bryony receives a quarterly Standard Allowance grant, to be used at her discretion. She also receives a Bills grant for household bills and unexpected expenditure.

Watch Bryony's Story

Throughout its existence the OA has supported officers and their dependants in many ways, but it has consistently addressed helping officers find employment, providing advice and, in cases of need, financial support.

During the past financial year:

Contact Us

Arrange a career consultation at your nearest OA office call 0117 906 3580 or email: client.admin@officersassociation.org.uk

Register for OA Employment Services via www.officersassociation.org.uk/register/

Speak to us about our Benevolence Services 0207 808 4175

Download the OA Impact Report 2016 - 2017

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