Mark Langdale, Regional Sector Director for Government & Defence, and Mo O’Connell, Senior Cost Consultant and Chair of Arcadis Force, share our initiatives to support military veterans…
What is Arcadis doing to support Armed Forces veterans?
Arcadis has committed to supporting military veterans, their families and current reservists by signing the Armed Forces Covenant to reflect our ongoing support.
In addition, we are proud to have established ‘Arcadis Force’. Led by an Army Reservist and ‘Arcadian’, Arcadis Force is a network for Service Personnel (Regular and Reserve, Military & MOD) and their families. The network provides an opportunity to connect and socialise with other Service Personnel, offer support to those in transition from Service, and meet as a community. The network is also focusing on initiatives to connect with serving personnel who are finishing their service and looking to transition into civilian roles.
Where is the network based?
Our members are from all levels and roles within our organisation across the UK. The group, which is voluntary, currently includes over 40 members and is continuing to grow. This includes veterans of the British Army, Royal Navy and Royal Air Force, service families of all services, and reservists who devote their time outside of Arcadis to their military career.
Why was the group set up?
Principally, it is part of our efforts to create an inclusive culture reflecting our core ‘People First’ value. And in a large organisation of over 4,000 spread across the UK, the group provides an easy way for colleagues with that armed forces connection to find one another. It’s been amazing how people who hadn’t really shared widely their armed forces background suddenly pop up when they discover there’s a network of colleagues with that common interest. Anyone who has served knows just how strong the bonds within the military ‘family’ can be, so it seemed entirely fitting to help create a group to foster those connections.
One of our key UK clients is the Ministry of Defence, and several colleagues who were in the Armed Forces work on this account. Our colleagues obviously bring a deep understanding of the Armed Forces through their experience. The insight and empathy they bring is invaluable in strengthening our understanding of our defence clients’ needs and how to shape what we do to fulfil them.
What are our achievements?
In committing to fair treatment for our military employees by signing the Armed Forces Covenant, we were delighted to be awarded the Silver Employer Award from the Ministry of Defence, through the Department’s ‘Employer Recognition Scheme’. The award recognises and celebrates our support for Arcadians who are connected to the Armed Forces. For example, we employ several Reservists who we support to deliver their Reserve commitments, through flexible working hours and additional holiday allowance for annual training.
What is next?
We’re keen to continue growing our Arcadis Force network in the year ahead and beyond. We’re exploring the steps needed to get the Gold Employer Award and in the meantime expect both to connect more of our colleagues and to recruit more veterans and Reservists.