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Female veterans face double barrier to finding work after leaving service, according to a new study.
Female veterans face a ‘double whammy’ of challenges when it comes to transitioning into employment once they have left the Armed Forces – those that are experienced by Service leavers in general, as well as those faced specifically by women, according to a new report.
The research carried out by Cranfield University and the Institute for Employment Studies (IES) examines the employment outcomes and experiences of female Service leavers as they transition into civilian paid employment. The report, commissioned by Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT), looks at the reasons why women have a lower employment rate (69%) compared to men (81%), after leaving the Armed Forces.
The research, which included a review of existing data, interviews and a survey with stakeholders, employers and female Service leavers themselves, reveals:
However, Service leavers in general have difficulty translating their military skills and experience into the civilian world, with some employers also believing they lack commercial and market experience and find it hard to adjust to less structured environments.
Female Service leavers and employers interviewed in the report said that women, unlike their male counterparts, undervalue their experience and may deselect themselves from roles they are suitable for.
The report also includes recommendations for the Ministry of Defence and employers, and calls on the MOD to:
Professor Emma Parry, the lead researcher at Cranfield University, says: “Female Service leavers face a double whammy of obstacles when it comes to transitioning into civilian employment. Only a minority of the women we spoke to felt that they received enough support during transition, and some said that the support they did get was not properly tailored to their needs. We hope this study inspires a collective effort to improve their transition to civilian employment.”