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Royal Engineers Complete Placements with BJF Group and VIVO Defence Services

14 February 2023 | Updated 16 February 2023

Military service personnel have been on placements with VIVO Defence Services and key supplier BJF Group to gain more experience in civilian work and make them more attractive to future employers.

Six soldiers from 26 Engineer Regiment (Royal Engineers) based in Wiltshire took part in the exercise to sharpen their work skills such as carpentry, bricklaying and other works.

The placements were arranged by VIVO Defence Services and BJF Group, who together provide hard FM at several military bases in the area.


Dedicated to Support


The two firms, who work on behalf of the Ministry of Defence’s Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), are committed to doing as much as possible to support those currently serving in our armed forces to gain valuable civilian work experience.

In addition, VIVO has committed to a target of at least 20 per cent of its new recruits having a military connection and to provide a guaranteed interview scheme for armed forces leavers.

The month-long placements, at HMS Collingwood and HMS Sultan throughout January, were designed to help those taking part gain real civilian work experience in their respective trades while working within surroundings that are familiar, strengthening their CV’s and giving them a head-start when they eventually leave the armed forces.


Guidance from Senior BJF Group


They were involved in various projects while also learning from, and being guided by, senior members of the BJF Group team.

Lance Corporal Leigh Graham, one of the service personnel from 26 Royal Engineers who took part, said: “These placements benefit our construction trade personnel within the Royal Engineers and helps them to bolster their qualifications and skills. They can even provide them with sight on civilian work life if they were looking to embark on leaving the army.”

Staff Sergeant Miles Purchase, Royal Engineers, said: “These placements were hugely valuable for our Engineers. While there are some practical elements to their training, it is important for them to gain experience of and understand real-world problems and challenges. We look forward to offering this opportunity to more Engineers in the future.”


Continuing in Strength


Both VIVO and BJF Group said they are pleased to have been able to help and are keen to continue the sessions with plans already in place for another tranche of engineers later this year.

Jerry Moloney, Managing Director of VIVO Defence Services, said: “As an organisation that only provides facilities management and maintenance services to the British military and its partners, it is really important to us that we help past and present members of the UK’s armed forces.

“We have committed to recruit people with military connections, offer a guaranteed interview for any that apply for our vacancies and are proud to have helped provide these placements with BJF Group for the Royal Engineers.”

Barry Foster, Managing Director at BJF Group added: “As a major contractor on the Ministry of Defence FDIS contract it is imperative that we and our client VIVO Defence Services do all we can to support members of our Armed Forces community.

“As a Silver Armed Forces Covenant Employer Recognition Award holder, we have a successful history of hiring ex-Service Personnel and initiatives such as this are crucial to ensuring that those transitioning out of the Armed Forces are well-equipped to be work-ready.

“We are proud to be working with our partner VIVO Defence Services and the Military to work towards a successful and positive experience for all involved.”

ThisWeekinFM are hosting not-for-profit events throughout the year exclusively for those that are about to leave, or have left, the Armed Forces and seeking a new challenge.

The aim of these events is to promote the huge number of opportunities for Service Leavers and Veterans within the Facilities Management, Built Environment, Property, Workplace and related sectors, to explain why it is such a good fit for them. Register your interest to find out about the next event.


Picture: 26 Engineer Regiment, BJF Group and VIVO Defence Services. Image credit: BJF Group and VIVO Defence Services.

Article written by Bailey Sparkes | Published 14 February 2023


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