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Q&A with Camilla Howard, Chair of Compass Group UK & Ireland’s Armed Forces community

Case Study

What does being a signatory of the AFC mean to employees and businesses?

Being a signatory of the Armed Forces Covenant means that businesses such as Compass Group UK & Ireland have set out a number of pledges in support of those who serve or who have served, and their families. As an Armed Forces-friendly organisation we have committed to supporting our employees who are part of the military community by: assisting veterans in their transition into a new career, providing our Reservists with an extra 10 days paid leave for their training, and supporting the redeployment of spouses to an alternative role internally on notification of posting.

Why are you involved with the AFC?

As an RAF veteran and Army spouse being involved with the AFC is both personal and something I’m really proud to be part of.

What are you looking to achieve as Chair?

As Chair I am hoping to continue to build our forces network across all sectors within Compass Group UK & Ireland. It’s fantastic to be part of an Armed Forces committee that is solely made up of volunteers (ex-military, reservists, spouses, and non-military SMEs) who give their time and expertise in support of our military community. We have an exciting 12 months ahead of us both in terms of planned events and new initiatives so watch this space.

What advice would you give to someone looking to leave the services and move into the civilian world?

My advice to someone looking to leave the service is to treat resettlement as a job in itself. Set out your red line areas such as: what salary would you not want to go below, where you want to be based, and what your commute limit is. That way you can discount any roles that don’t fit within those boundaries, and you don’t waste time investigating them further. I’d also recommend using your network and find a company that understands the military, and your military CV, so that they can assist you in recognising where your transferrable skills would sit within the business. Then just go for it, it’s not as scary on this side as many people think!

Q&A with Camilla Howard, Chair of Compass Group UK & Ireland's Armed Forces Covenant Committee