Leaving the Army and being f***ed

#1
:D Is there anybody else out there who kinda feels just a tiny bit resentful about the Army? What can I say, I dont regret the things I did; throwing myself off rockfaces attached to a tiny piece of rope held by the biggest goon in the world, or being drowned underneath freezing cold water whilst some idiot pushes me down the rapids......for a laugh.......or getting so massively drunk that I get put on duty for a squillion years...but hey, anyway, I left to do a university course that I couldn't do IN the fantastic force, and found that civi street pays sweet FA for stupid 'office' jobs (which seem to be the only ones avaliable), and I dont think the fact that I can shoot a rifle is going to help me in the CV stakes.....my worst nightmare is ending up as a cleaner or something for the rest of my natural life.... have I made a big boner by leaving do you think? :oops: I mean Ive looked at these 'for ex-forces personnel'websites and they kind of only want engineers and stuff which Im not...dont get me wrong, Im not the thickest person in the world, I can type (ish) I've got 8 GCSE's, but it doesn't seem to be enough! I cant help but rant!! And dont accuse me of not getting off my butt and not looking hard enough, believe me, I have looked EVERYWHERE.....I know I have the leadership skills and all that stuff that everybody who doesn't end up getting THROWN out of the Army has, but this only seems to me to be useful once I already have OTHER traits that employers want. :( HELP!!!!
 
#3
'university course' so you have a degree then? Try the uni's career service they will help you find something you are suited to. Theres no point in resenting the Army. Ask yourself this, did you try as hard as you could to better yourself and take advantage of all the opportunities open to you in the forces?



No?


Try harder next time.
 
#7
I'll play the sympathy card, but I've got to admit that it's too late for you. You should have asked before you left! Hence advice to those planning to leave.

Just to set the scene. I'm not Regular, but I've met a few who've left - either after a long stint or just a few years.

You will find lots of posts saying "Leaving's the best thing I've done, I can make loads of money, more than I could have dreamed of in the Army." While there may be exceptions, these are probably all from people who have gained a useful trade in the Army - useful in the sense that there is an equivalent civvy trade that pays over the odds. Currently, this applies mainly to electricians, people with in-depth IT know-how and very few others.

If you watch "Rogue Traders" you'll note that most of the people depicted look very ex-military. These people make loads of dosh by flanneling the customer who has no knowledge of the trade, but they haven't got the experience necessary to get a job with an established firm - hence they turn cowboy. The Army will teach a trade but doesn't provide the experience.

If you're not in a Corps (RE, REME, RSigs etc), the chances are that your trade skills won't match civvy requirements, so you'll come out and be faced with menial work. Even with menial work, you'll often need to supply your own tools (suitable for civvy conditions - so the DIY stuff won't do) or be faced with even lower paid jobs.

If you are in a Corps, it will depend on what trades the market place requires at the time. But, as I've mentioned, there's a good chance that you won't have the experience required, so you'll start at the bottom. If you've got a wide variety of experience (i.e. you may not be much good at doing a specific task, but know enough about many to spot mistakes), if you're lucky you could pick up a supervisory job that pays more pennies.

The market place is looking for HGV drivers, but there's little money to be made unless you've got enough cash behind you to buy your own vehicle and trailers (note plural).

Financially, your best bet is to do your 22, saving while you're in and getting on the plum courses, and use your gratuity wisely. Either that or leave young and accept that you'll be competing with 17/18 year olds.

To put things in perspective, I've worked with the same firm for 24 years and, bragging aside, am probably one of the best at what I do in UK, if not Europe and beyond. When I was mobilised, my Army pay was 50% higher than my civvy pay.

Do I regret not going through with joining the Regulars back in 1975? Maybe, but it's also possible that I would have spent the last 10 years doing a job that I would have detested and for even less money. It's a question of timing and luck.
 
#8
If you really are a honey there's always massage work/lapdancing. I hear it's very lucrative. Post a pic why dontcha, to get an honest opinion.

I'm sure The Lord Flasheart will give you one.

:)
 
#9
I think you largely make your own luck. Civi street is a doddle after the Army. It’s not difficult to progress in most careers even if you do start at the bottom. We have (or should have) a can do attitude that is not common in civilian life. My boss knows if he gives me a job to do I will just get on and finish it. I won’t be whinging and moaning about how it is difficult or whatever, it will just get done. That counts for a lot as you can be relied on, every time.

Perhaps if you are struggling you should re-evaluate your expectations. Nobody owes you a living you’re going to have to earn it.
 
#10
.... on a serious note (but I still think you should consider the Gentlemen's Relief route to riches), Ord.Sgt is dead right.

I came out a while ago and found that every temp job I did I got offered permanent usually within the day. I may have taken modest pride in my ability to skive whilst in the Army, but I hadn't reckoned with the civvy version, which is to just not do the work and - here's the crucial difference - not even PRETEND to have done the work. Ex soldiers stand out against such lacklustre competition. In the Army we learn how to stride purposefully about with a clipboard. How to unreel, and then reel in, a length of cable. How to stand near an open paint tin, lips pursed, giving meaningful looks to a wall/door/landy/OC which obviously needs a fresh coat.

These are valuable transferable skills. Make the leap to an office job and use similar techniques. The world is your oyster. Just think of all those officers at MoD. Do you think for one second they are actually doing anything? Of course not! The minute anyone walks into their offices (rare in itself), they carry out IA drill 1, flicking from Ebay to Word, or IA drill 2, telling their startled girlfriend on the phone '... and I need that report by close of play today! Or your feet in my intray! Out!', and slamming the phone down. In extremis, it's IA drill 3, which is to wake up.

In industry, that level of ability is worth £75k minimum.

Live the dream. As the Regimental motto goes, woven in threads of gold on standards stained with the blood of a thousand battlefields....

'Skive to Survive - Bullshit baffles Brains'
 
#11
There are many and varied things you can do if you don't have a trade when you come out of the forces. As has been said above - you make your own luck by your decisions.

One career that is open to anybody witha bit of command / leadership experience is Project Management - if you can work your way through an estimate you can easily be a project manager (and it does pay quite well). There is big demand for PM's in industry, IT, Government, Health etc etc. I would recommend you look into both Prince 2, APM (Association for Project Management) and UCL for their PM courses and Qualifications.

I would also recommend a trawl through this forum as there are examples of CV's posted here - any experience can be made relevant - it just depends on how you sell it.

I would also recommed that you sign up with the List www.thelist.co.uk
 
#14
There are loads of jobs out there just depends what you want to do. I was shittin bricks as I did 23 years 1 as a boy soldier and just got out July this year. I was shittin it oh god where am I going to work settle etc here I am a few months later my family settled in Melbourne Aus as wife went to Uni and here I am working in Afghanistan. Yes guess who with Squaddies and NATO troops but I say I am considerably more richer than them 40000 GBP per year tax free and free food and accommodation in an Army base not bad.

Anybody need any contacts there a few jobs going Sarejevo, Afghan to name but a few gimme a shout and I will give some contacts.

Take it easy

Tazzer
 
#15
I left the forces 5 years ago and for a while felt the same as you, I was armoured corps and thought my only skill was tank driving and that is a fat lot of good in civvy street, I had no transferable qualifications. But i soon realised that squaddies have a unique ability to get the job done and can adapt to any situation. I went offshore after applying for a job that i had no qualifications to get, luckily personel manager was ex-raf and appreciated ex-forces. Once i got the job i adopted the squaddie attitude of head down shut up and listen to what i was getting told and i soon found out that it wasnt that difficult and i did have the skills to do the job(just didnt have a bit of paper telling me i had the skills) 5 years on i am now running the engineering workshop and earn 4 times what i earned in the Army. Ok i have been lucky but dont ever think that you cant get the job, Apply for everything once you get a foot in the door you will be amazed at what skills you have
 
#17
vandyke said:
I left the forces 5 years ago and for a while felt the same as you, I was armoured corps and thought my only skill was tank driving and that is a fat lot of good in civvy street, I had no transferable qualifications. But i soon realised that squaddies have a unique ability to get the job done and can adapt to any situation. I went offshore after applying for a job that i had no qualifications to get, luckily personel manager was ex-raf and appreciated ex-forces. Once i got the job i adopted the squaddie attitude of head down shut up and listen to what i was getting told and i soon found out that it wasnt that difficult and i did have the skills to do the job(just didnt have a bit of paper telling me i had the skills) 5 years on i am now running the engineering workshop and earn 4 times what i earned in the Army. Ok i have been lucky but dont ever think that you cant get the job, Apply for everything once you get a foot in the door you will be amazed at what skills you have
Same here. Remove "Armoured Corps" and insert AAC and remove "Tank driving" and insert "Ballast" and I was pretty much the same.

I know I've harped on about it before, but a vastly under used asset for ex mil is the RBL. I can't stress enough how helpful they can be. After I had got my first job (which they got me the interview for) and acquired my new skills, I went to them to ask for advice in setting up my own business.

Not only did I get some sound advice, some dross as well but that tends to go hand in hand, I also got a business grant from them on terms that you will never get from a civvy lender. 6 years later I have a company employing 9 people, 2 of them ex services, and a turnover in 7 figures. I have no doubt whatsoever that if it would not have been for the RBL then the business would not have started when it did. I have also acquired contracts from fellow RBL members as a direct result of the "old boys" network. Don't forget, your local branch will have people that are ex mil that have been out for a long time and have prospered in their own fields and, if they are anything like me, they would rather dish out work to fellow ex squaddies than to civvies.

Start HERE and see what they can do for you, all you have to lose is the cost of a couple of phone calls.

If you want any further advice, drop me a PM

Good luck

A_S
 
#18
Not specific to your situation, but being near graudation i've been looking at th jobs market and getting advice from the careers service etc...... If your degree is a numerate one, look to London for your big firms who do accountancy, finance, managmenent consutlancy etc.... There's an awful lot of people out there who aren't very good at maths, and have no ability to work with figures. If you've got a maths a-level, or do a similar level in your course, that's a big advantage in getting a well paid job managing other people's money. They're only short contracts (the firms hire lots when going's good, and fire lots when going's bad), but it is possible to earn a bucket load. Hope that's of some help.

Or if you're doing a Zoology or Geology degree, do as i'm going to do and get a job as a safari guide in Africa. Botswana here I come! :)
 
#19
I reckon this post sounds awfully like a journo-troll, really. It has no mention of any career transition activities, what trade she was allegedly in or REAL Army stuff; only the stuff that civvies perceive as typical Army - adventure training and alcohol!

Go on Xarmedhoney, give us a bit more info. I reckon you're trolling for resettlement horror stories.

Oh...has anyone else noticed that the resettlement grant of £534 has stayed the same for over 10 years? That means it has reduced in real terms by about half. Now - THAT's a scandal.
 
#20
I left after 12 years adult service and 1.5 for the Queen, determined not to get a job in the area which my army trade more than qualified me for. I did, easily, and now find myself in a senior position in my chosen field. I do earn more than I did as a soldier, not much more, just comfortably more, and find civvy life a doddle. When ever I do interview panels I am always impressed by the way ex-forces guys present themselves when they are placed along side graduates, industry professionals etc, and more often or not they get the job over these types as they have far more positive attitudes and greater communication skills. The resettlement system lets the individual choose their future, it is not intended to give them one.
 

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