Finalists – British Ex-Forces in Business Awards 2020!

We are absolutely delighted to have been selected as a finalist in the British Ex-Forces in Business Awards 2020!

It makes all the hard work worthwhile.


Finalists - Ex-Forces in Business Awards

Time to line up your ducks and get ahead of the competition in a competitive jobs market

Line up your ducks for the 2020-21 jobs market

I don’t think I need to explain, especially on this blog, why lining up your ducks and getting your CV and other professional marketing collateral such as your LinkedIn profile is important in what will no doubt become a very competitive jobs market. We encountered similar challenges back in 2008 – 2012 during the last recession, and the candidates which won then were the ones who got their house in order and quickly learned how to promote their value proposition to potential employers.

  • Are you clear on your career direction?
  • Is your CV the very best it can be?
  • Do you have an All-Star optimised LinkedIn profile so that recruiters/potential employers can easily find you?
  • Are you ready and super confident to ace those interviews or would working with a coach for a few hours help to calm those nerves, structure your answers and give you ways to communicate your military experience in clear, concise civilian terms?

Your CV is the document you’ll rely on to secure an interview for your next job, or your next advancement up the corporate ladder. Needless to say, it’s a pretty useful asset. During the Covid-19 pandemic, we have seen many businesses start to lay off staff and freeze recruitment, despite the government’s best attempts to save as many jobs as possible through the furlough scheme.

However, things are not all so grim. The economy will pick up again, businesses will start to open up vacancies that will get snapped up very quickly by a wave of applicants. Now, more than ever, is the time to prepare to get back into the jobs market. Update your CV, practise your interview skills, ready to compete with thousands of others for the finite number of jobs available.

Don’t worry, you are not alone. The good news is that you can prepare for it. Make a start by looking at your CV as it currently stands and assess your skills and achievements. Use whatever is left of the lockdown to refine and refresh your CV. This is important for two reasons. One, you will be one of the better organised, better prepared candidates. This is crucial. The more prepared you are, the more opportunities will come your way, and the more confident you come across, the better you’ll perform at interview.

So line up your ducks and get started!

Are you clear about the kind of job you want to target? Do you know your stuff? Have you researched that job to see if you fit the bill in terms of the skills, experience and qualifications that the employer is looking for? Is your marketing documentation (CV, LinkedIn profile) up to scratch? And does it effectively show employers why you’re their ideal candidate, and why they should employ you, rather than just regurgitating the last twenty years of your career? Ask yourself these questions. It’s vital that you know where you want to go, how you can get there, and what you can do to prove that you deserve to be there and have what it takes to do the job well.

Employers will want to know:

Can you do the job? Will you do the job? Will you fit into the organisation?

Working on your interview skills is an excellent investment of your time. Make sure that you can clearly communicate your military skills and experience to the employer in a way they would understand. Finding ways to translate these qualifications into civilian language will give you a far greater chance at being considered for the job. Do you know how to properly structure your answers and score high marks in competency based interviews? Confidence is key, and as I said, this comes with practise and preparation, and the best way to boost yours is by having a coach to lean on and with whom you can practice until you get it right. All the top performers have a coach.

We have over 50 year’s combined commercial experience and know exactly what employers want to see in CVs and at interviews. We have helped thousands of people just like you to secure their next role. Our best days at work happen when clients come back to us with news of a new job or to update their CVs. That’s when we celebrate! We are also happy to just offer some friendly advice and guidance or provide free feedback.  So feel free to get in touch for a chat anytime. You can contact us at , give us a call on 07715 302312 or find out more at

Tom Richardson – Personal Assistant at Forces CV & Career Services

How Coaching Can Help You in Your Job Search

Due to the Covid-19 crisis and the resultant economic impact, it’s a very worrying time for employees across all sectors. Many people are concerned about their future, whereas others have had time to think about whether changing jobs might be a good option for them. Whatever your situation, we can help you to get clear on your direction and promote your skills and expertise in a very competitive jobs market.

During June and July, we are offering a free no-obligation 20-minute chat with our qualified coach to help you explore how coaching may be able to help you.
To find out more, email your CV and contact details to

(This offer is open to everyone regardless of your professional background or sector)
#coaching #skills #job #careercoaching #jobhunting

How career coaching can help in your job search

FREE 20-Minute Introduction to Explore How Coaching Can Help in Your Job Search

FREE 15-Minute Coaching Consultation – Limited Spaces Available

Book your FREE 15-Minute Career or Interview Coaching Consultation Now!

FREE 15-Minute Coaching Consultation – Limited Spaces!

Remote Interview? How to Look Good on Skype

The recent onslaught of Covid-19 has meant that while many companies continue to recruit, they’ve had to increase the number of remote interviews they conduct, in order to minimise contact with candidates. Do you have a remote interview coming up? Here are some great tips from leading presenter, Guto Harri.


Don’t Give Up!

So Lent starts today and some people think about what they will give up during that period. Instead of giving up things like chocolate or wine, how about giving up some of these? No, not pancakes….these:
* Not planning for your next career move (PPPPPP)
* Thinking that you are not as good as other candidates in Civvy Street (I never cease to be amazed by the high calibre of my ex mil clients)
* Not selling what you have to offer over and above other candidates (What makes you different?)
* Using a scatter gun approach to the job search process (Know your target and get a plan to achieve it)
* Taking advice from anyone and everyone about what a good CV looks like, instead of people who can really help you (Confused? You will be!)
* Hanging on every word of people offering buckets of free advice who have no real track record and some kind of ulterior motive (Oh yes folks, beware of those bearing gifts)
* Not preparing well enough for interviews and working on all the areas which could easily earn you extra brownie points (You’ve got this, you just need a little bit of structure and a confidence boost)
Believe in yourself, don’t sell yourself short, listen to the right people and plan well my friends.
Military Career Transition

Leaving the military & creating a new career in civilian life…


New Career

Please allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Mike Neary, former SNCO in the RAF Regiment. I served for 22 years and retired from military life in 2003, I was fortunate that I had a plan. I joined the Regiment with no educational qualifications, I left with a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in Education (BA Hon’s) as well as a Post Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE). I got my dream job working in a College of Further Education delivering the Public Services course, preparing young people to join the armed forces, fire brigade and so on. It lasted 3 years. Why, you might ask? It was simple, I realised I am not manageable –  my standards, as yours will be, are extremely high. People simply didn’t live up to what I was expecting them to be, Managers! Or were they?

I would say this: remember your skill base, if you’re a JNCO you are very capable of applying your managerial skills to middle management. If you’re a SNCO then middle management and above. You need a well written Curriculum Vitae (CV) that explains your military skills in civilian speak, e.g. I  was a Platoon Sergeant; I was a middle manager responsible for managing the welfare of 30 or more people. Don’t under sell yourselves, you are incredibly capable people, civilians like to employ ex forces people, why? Because we are reliable, prompt, honest, we have a great sense of duty, my whole team are ex-military bar 2. One of them is the other Director whom I am married to.

I have owned my own business for 13 years, my company is called Managing Excellence Through Training Ltd, this means I have to go out networking. Learn the civilian language, if you think we use a lot of jargon; they are really bad for using acronyms , especially if you will be dealing with technical people. If you are looking at being recruited, get your profile on Linked IN, go to job fairs, outside of the military ones, connect with ex- military people on social media. We know the pitfalls because we’ve already made the mistakes and hopefully learned from them. If you’re offered training take it, the company are paying for it, it can always be used if you move jobs. Your next job is not a job for life, keep training and developing your skill base. Join membership bodies like the Institute for Leadership and Management. You will more than likely have 3 to 4 jobs before you settle into your ideal role.

Lastly, life in civvy street isn’t that bad, we do need to learn how to adapt, you won’t get a response to an email within the hour, sometimes it takes days. What I have found is there is no sense of urgency, it also takes a while to calm down. I often hear this from other ex- military people ”civvies don’t understand me, that’s why I can’t get a job”. We were civvies before we enlisted, they understood us then. I am most certainly not saying let your standards drop but do expect the unexpected. Remember organisations are out there looking for what you have got to offer. You can connect with me on Linked In if that helps.

Good luck to you all

Mike Neary BA Hon’s PGCE MInst LM

Managing Director of METT Training Ltd

Military Resettlement

BFRS National Careers Event – Aldershot Jan 30th 2020

careers fair, service leavers, career transition, CV writing

Come long and meet the team at the first 2020 BFRS National Careers Event in Aldershot on Jan 30th.

Vicki and I will be there to give FREE CV, CAREER & INTERVIEW advice to service leavers, veterans and their families. We look forward to meeting you!

It’s not weak to speak

May is mental health awareness month.

Take a look at this short but powerful video made by my lovely friend’s daughter about her inspirational dad’s struggle with mental health and his message; ‘It’s not weak to speak’.

Andy is a former Royal Engineer and now spends time sharing his story and mental health journey to help others. Listen to Andy. He makes sense.

British Forces Resettlement Services Careers Fair

I’m honoured to have been giving CV & Careers advice at the BFRS National Careers Events held around the UK for the last 5 years or so.

Yesterday, we were in Catterick Garrison and what an amazing day it was! There was a real buzz about the place and I overheard lots of attendees – service leavers and veterans – say how much they valued the advice and information given by exhibitors, whether it was from training companies like NUCO or employers such as BAE Systems.

It was great to meet so many skilled and talented service leavers and veterans, from Transport Managers and Supply Chain specialists to HR Managers and Quantity Surveyors. However, I was struck by the fact that I see the same issues cropping up when it comes to their CVs. So I’ve listed a few of the main stumbling blocks below:

  • CVs which are not targeted to a specific type of job – the CV is your marketing document! Do you meet the role criteria?
  • Skills sections at the end of a CV on page 2 show-case your skills on page 1!
  • Career History too task-orientedbreath some life into it with strong examples of how you used your core skills in past roles
  • Nothing to differentiate your CV from otherswhy should they interview you? What have you done to add value and  how well have you performed? 
  • Too much textmake it easy for people to see key information. Don;t hide it with too much content in the wrong places

There are many more points but these are key areas I focus on when writing interview-winning CVs.

The next BFRS careers event is in Stafford in May. I hope to see you there, but if you can’t make it and would still like an expert opinion on the quality of your CV, you can request a CV Health Check via our online service at