We're proud to be a ‘forces friendly’ employer

National Highways supports Armed Forces Week (19-24 June)

We're proud to be a ‘forces friendly’ employer

Today marks the start of Armed Forces Week.

We're proud to support our colleagues from the armed forces. In 2020, we re-signed the Armed Forces Covenant. We also achieved the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme gold award for our support to the Armed Forces community.

This year we're  celebrating Reserves Day on Wednesday 21 June and Armed Forces Day on Saturday 24 June. Find out more about activities in your area.

Our armed forces community

Some of our colleagues are Veterans whose military experience, transferable skills and qualifications now help us connect the country.

Some serve part-time in the Reserve Forces, receiving additional special leave for training and occasional deployment on military operations.

Others are Cadet Force adult volunteers, who get similar support to help give young cadets a head-start in life.

We have a growing armed forces and veterans employee network. It's open to all members of the armed forces community, as well as their spouses, partners and allies.

Meet some members of our armed forces community

I joined National Highways in December 2022, having previously served in the Royal Navy. I joined as an Artificer Apprentice in 1984 and I left in 2006 as a Lieutenant (Weapon Engineer) having gained my commission in 2000.

I served thirteen years on submarines and nine years with the surface fleet. My final appointment was leading a joint team of Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force, and civilian specialists at an RAF base in Cambridge.

The things that align between my time in the RN and National Highways are being organised and structured whilst trying to anticipate what others will do, say or want. Expect the unexpected and plan for it. Treat people how they wish to be treated and remember if you treat people like rubbish, rubbish is what you’ll get, and you can’t expect anything else.

I joined National Highways in December 2020, having previously served in the Royal Air Force from 2002 to 2012 in intelligence as an imagery analyst at RAF Coltishall and RAF Brampton. I served multiple tours of Afghanistan and Iraq amongst other places around the world and even covered for a firefighters strike early in my career.

My role involved examining and analysing photographic imagery from reconnaissance aircraft, whether from fast jets such as Jaguars and Tornados or cameras operated by myself and helicopter crews - and even from satellites.

On joining National Highways it was great to find out we had an armed forces employee network, enjoy some service banter, and be in the company of like-minded colleagues from a service background who understood my experience.

I joined the Network Steering Group and hope to keep supporting National Highways to recruit other members of the armed forces community such as service leavers and veterans.

Unfortunately, I had to leave the Army in 2014 due to redundancy. Having family in what was then Highways Agency, I applied for a role based on my skills and values that I had engrained during my time serving.

Coming from an engineering background as a Plant Operator Mechanic in the Royal Engineers – and having previously completed construction and operational tours in Belize, Kenya, Canada, and Afghanistan - I understood the fundamentals of the business quickly.

Transitioning wasn’t easy and at the time, the ‘appetite’ to appoint veterans into roles was non-existent. Having bounced around within the business across all areas over the past ten years, I can now confirm that National Highways values veterans and the experience they bring. We have a valuable employee network and new positions are regularly being filled by veterans.

(Armed forces week logo ©UK MOD Crown Copyright 2022.)

Our Armed Forces programme

You’ve protected our country, now help us to keep it connected - our Armed Forces programme provides a supportive route into your civilian career.

Find out more