'Openreach', BT's local access network business, has previously recruited more than 800 engineers from ex-Forces personnel and the current campaign will see that total rise to more than 1,000.
Serving personnel who are due to leave the Armed Forces within the next year have been written to by the MOD's Career Transition Partnership with an offer to spend three months with Openreach on a civilian attachment. At the end of that period, assuming all criteria are met and if they wish to, they will be able to take up the offer of a new career with Openreach after they have left the Armed Forces.
The successful applicants will support BT's fibre broadband programme by installing the service in homes and businesses across the UK. Demand for fibre broadband is growing all the time and the engineers will help ensure the business keeps up with that demand. The second of four 10-day-long training courses started today at Openreach's training academy in Yarnfield Park in Staffordshire, and further courses will run until early November. This will ensure that the first batch of trained engineers from this exciting and novel partnership will start to assist customers from late October onwards.
Minister of State for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, Mark Francois, said: "It is fantastic news that a further 250 posts have been announced today. The vast majority who leave the Armed Forces make full use of the comprehensive resettlement package to facilitate a smooth transition into the civilian workforce, and I'm pleased to say that schemes like the Openreach work attachment make that process even easier."
Engineer Dave Smith, who joined Openreach in April 2011 after 24 years in the Army, said: "Since joining Openreach I've found that it's very similar to the military. We work as a team, there is a great work ethos amongst all the engineers, and the daily banter is great. I have no regrets in joining BT; it's a fantastic company to work for and wouldn't hesitate in recommending it to my former colleagues in the Army."
Liv Garfield, the Chief Executive of Openreach, said: "We have had great success in recruiting talented people with Armed Forces experience in the past so we are delighted to be able to offer these roles to people who are set to leave the Forces. Past recruits have brought great enthusiasm and professionalism with them and I have no doubt the new recruits will as well."