LONDON, 19 February 2014 – CompTIA, the global IT trade association, is helping solve both the IT skills gap and the growing number of ex-service professionals struggling to find jobs.
Armed for IT Careers, launched today, will provide a one-stop-shop for ex-military personnel to learn about a career in IT, find training, find resettlement funding, get qualified and land their first IT job.
Since the 2010 defence review there have been an increasing number of service leavers returning to the UK and looking for civilian jobs. Meanwhile, the latest research from eSkills suggests 129,000 new entrants a year are required to fill new IT & Telecoms job roles in the UK.
Graham Hunter, Western Europe Director at CompTIA, says: “Military professionals often have strong business, communication and technical skills and a good work ethic, which are all much in demand in the IT industry. There are a wide range of jobs for which someone with military training and leadership skills would be a perfect fit.”
“We believe the problem has been that, until now, there has been nothing which clearly outlines the opportunities, then helps them train and certify the technical skills they need to make the transition. We believe this is a real missed opportunity both for the IT industry, which needs great people, and for hard working military leavers who want to contribute to society back home”.
The programme website www.armedforitcareers.org aims to become the go to resource for anyone looking to transition from the military into the IT industry.
For those ready to embark on an IT career, Armed for IT Careers takes them through a clear three step process for finding their first IT job.
Learn: Identify IT training providers who are experienced at training ex-military professionals and approved by the MOD for resettlement training funding
Certify: Find and take the qualifications to demonstrate you have the skills for an IT career
Work: Search for jobs in your area and specialisation
For those earlier in their resettlement journey, the site explains what an IT career offers former military personnel and how to identify funding for resettlement training.
As well as supporting veterans directly into jobs, the programme also provides information for training providers and employers who wish to train and recruit ex-service people. CompTIA is keen to hear from anyone who would like to support the scheme.
Russ Muir followed the path which has now been formalised under Armed for IT Careers. After 23 years in the Navy he studied for and certified in the CompTIA Network+, the entry level qualification for network engineer roles. This, combined with his military experience, landed him his first IT role.
Russ says: “The forces have a big advantage in IT, partly because they often have the right skills to get in, but also because the financial packages available to those leaving the military are well suited to the well-defined training and certification routes into IT.”
Armed for IT Careers has broad support from industry and government. Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery, is a keen supporter. He says “Wansbeck has always been a fertile recruiting ground for the armed forces, and we have a duty to ensure they have long term and sustainable careers when they return. I am a strong advocate of CompTIA’s Armed for IT Careers programme which helps individuals who've served our country find long-term and sustainable careers within a growing, exciting sector. Local employers will also benefit from hiring motivated individuals with up to date industry credentials.”