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Milton Keynes Council receives ERS Gold Award

Category: Job Finding

Milton Keynes Council receives ERS Gold Award It’s easy to imagine that Milton Keynes’s only link to all things Military is the historic Bletchley Park. This is not quite the case; with two Army Reserve units (Army Air Corps and Military Intelligence) and Rifles units close by in north Bucks, there’s plenty going on. 

The local veteran community regularly come together with drop-ins, breakfast clubs and veteran health information events. Over half the local GP’s have signed up to the ‘Veteran Friendly GP scheme’ driven by the local veteran health champion (RAMC Lt Col as well as a GP) and the councils Armed Forces covenant officer. The newly formed MK/Bedford ‘Veterans Community Network’ works in partnership with military charities and national agencies to make sure Service leavers and their family can be guided into the right service or treatment. Trained peer mentors also support veterans through treatment, reducing dropout rates. 

Milton Keynes Council: why work there?

Milton Keynes Council won the MoD’s Employer Recognition Schemes Silver Award in 2019. Not content to stop there, they went on to win a Gold Award this year. What does this mean for MK Council employees?

  • 10 days paid leave for Reservists (up to 8 additional unpaid)
  • 10 days paid leave for Cadet Force Adult Volunteers
  • Guaranteed interviews (where essential criteria is met) for those within 12 weeks of leaving or have left within the last 5 years
  • Access to an Ex-forces buddy/mentor to help veterans/Service leavers transition into the workplace
  • Internal ‘Forces Family Focus Group’ meets every quarter to catch up with other members of the Armed Forces Family, seek support, update on new veterans’ legislation and have a brew!
  • The chance to join in civic commemorations, such as the annual VE/VJ day and Armistice events, where the local reservist and veteran network always get an invite too.
  • View Current Job Vacancies and Employee Benefits 

Why move to Milton Keynes?

There can be no greater advertisement for Milton Keynes than the thousands of businesses that have developed here and the many that have chosen to locate here over the years. This is reflected by the fact that they are number one for job creation in the UK. Over the next few years, MK will become the largest area in the south of England after London as it expands by 28,000 homes, with a population forecast to reach 500,000 by 2050. It’s only 35 minutes away from London and situated right next to the M1 and A5.

As well as being home of the Open University, MK: U is planned to be a new model university for Milton Keynes, designed to meet urgent technological skills gaps. The vision for the new, ground-breaking university is one that is hands-on, focused on a curriculum for the digital economy, and specifically addressing the employment needs of organisations in the 21st century. MK is an entrepreneurial, innovative and exciting digitally enabled ‘smart city’ where you can have food delivered to your door by robots and hire an e-scooter to get to work on a network of cycle paths called ‘Redways’. Its location at the heart of the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford arc means that Milton Keynes is perfectly poised to benefit from the growth of what has already been identified as the UK's answer to Silicon Valley.

Johanna, Army Reservist:
“I can honestly say that I feel my military services are valued, catered for and wholly supported by both my peers and managers. Many colleagues aren’t aware of the reserve forces and are very keen to hear more about what I get up to on weekends and exercises. The skills and qualifications I gained through my reserve career, I feel, makes me more confident, capable and ultimately employable.”

Angela, Royal Navy Veteran: “We are very lucky at the council to have a Forces Family Focus Group which meets once a quarter, for which we are granted the time off to attend. Whether you are ex-Forces, reservist, family member of someone who has/is serving, or you have grown up in a forces family, everyone is welcome. At our last meeting we discussed issues around leaving the forces and how difficult the transition can be for some; as well as transferable skills, CV’s and just getting a foot in the door. We were able to share issues from both sides and offer ideas as to how employers could potentially help. It’s so nice to be connected to the Armed Forces Family once again!”

Steven, Royal Engineers Veteran: “Having a forces friendly employer is reassuring for those of us in the forces family. It’s great to know that there is an understanding that the sacrifices made in service to the nation are being recognised, both for ex/service personnel and their families. The HR policy offers reassurance to Reservists / Cadet Instructors that they will not lose out by volunteering to serve. It also aids Service leavers in readjusting to civilian life, which some can find difficult and daunting. By encouraging Remembrance commemorations, it shows the Council wishes to honour those that have paid the ultimate sacrifice in defending the nation. A career at MK Council is similar to the Forces; we are serving the community, albeit on a local service level and not in Defence of the Realm”.