LAMONT DUNSTAN, 41, EXPLAINS HOW THE BERKELEY GROUP HELPED WHEN HE LEFT THE ARMY FOR CIVILIAN LIFE.
What worried you about leaving the Army?
“I had spent seven years in the Royal Logistics Corp organising shipments to foreign bases. I knew rent in the
outside world was much more expensive than in the Army. Affording suitable accommodation was a real concern.”
What were the first months out of the Army like?
“I saw an old Army mate and he had a new job in construction. He got it with the help of BuildForce (www.buildforce.org.uk) – they find employment in that sector for ex-members of the Forces. I emailed them the next day. Almost immediately, they introduced me to Berkeley St Edward. It happened so fast!”
Were you worried about taking an apprenticeship?
“I was nervous but was sent information explaining everything. I could see I would get a good wage, be trained and how my Army experience would help. The Army is more rigid, everyone does what they are told. Here, you can use your initiative more.”
Duration – Three years to become a Site Manager. “I want to smash the apprenticeship! Then I want to push on and become a Senior Site Manager, which is another two years’ training, and eventually become a Construction Manager.”
Salary range – Annual salary of £27,000 to £65,000 depending on experience. My work day “I shadow a site manager and my understanding of logistics really helps. We can bounce ideas off each other. It’s really rewarding.”
Advice for other ex-Army colleagues -“You can apply all the skills and experiences you gained in the Forces and use them in your new career. Go for it!”