The BuildForce mentor is an important part of the service leaver and veteran’s personal and professional journey. Our mentors typically possess military or construction experience:
We are continually growing our mentor network and always welcome new members. Our Mentor matching platform matches according to skillset and location.
Please complete the registration form and a member of the BuildForce team will be in touch.
Thank you for expressing an interest in our Mentoring programme, please complete the registration form and a member of the BuildForce team will make contact to discuss next steps.
Construction North, SHE Advisor
Are you ex-military? “Yes, I served in the 2nd Battalion of the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment from 2007-2014”
When did you sign-up to BuildForce as a Mentor and how much time have you given to the programme? “I signed up to BuildForce in July 2018, after it was brought to my attention by our Community investment manager (Gill Roberts).
Generally speaking, the mentoring scheme is really flexible, the mentee dictates the pace of the relationship and it doesn’t take up too much of my time. Being a mentor is like being a sounding board – you give advice and the mentee is free to pick and choose what they find helpful.”
What was your motivation for signing up? “I remember when I left the Army, the military provided plenty of support, yet I still felt vulnerable and anxious about my next career move. Luckily, I was given my first opportunity by a veteran called Tony Haigh, who is a safety professional in the construction industry. So naturally, when I learned about the BuildForce scheme I jumped at the chance to be able to offer support to people who are going through the resettlement process; you could say I went full circle. It’s also important to understand that you don’t have to be ex-military to mentor; the key motivation is placing people in the industry to address the skill shortage.”
What have your activities involved as a Mentor? “To date, I’ve mentored a chap called Cedric Mane, Cedric is due to leave the Army in March, and his aspiration is to work as a safety professional. My relationship with Cedric is really informal and we chat over the phone or on Whatsapp, mostly about advice and guidance. I brought Cedric to work to orient him around the civilian workplace and he sat in on some Human factors training, I’ve shown him various documents that he had learned about while studying his Nebosh certificates and explained how they apply in practice. Additionally, I’m aiming to get him booked in to sit the CSCS test and bring him back into to work to gain more experience. Hopefully, this makes him more appealing to future employers and he can secure a job when he leaves the military.”
What would you say to anyone getting involved? “Mentoring is a rewarding experience, not just for the mentee but for the mentor and the organisation they work for. For example, the mentee will get improved self-confidence, a sense of value, and access to new ideas and perspectives, Whereas, you get a sense of satisfaction and your organisation gets a chance to disseminate their organisational values, plus invest in motivated candidates who will have an abundance of transferable skills.”
Are you ex-military? “No”
When did you sign-up to BuildForce as a Mentor and how much time have you given to the programme? “11th December2018, after attending one of BuildForce’s Armed Forces insight day. I usually devote 2/4 days per month.”
What was your motivation for signing up as a Mentor? “To assist ex-Military personnel with their transition to civilian life. I also enjoy meeting and helping the wide range of people wanting to learn about the Construction Industry”
What have your activities involved as being a Mentor? “Arranging one to one mentoring meetings to get to know each other and where I can be of assistance. Putting together mentoring plans and activities that assist in connecting with the Construction Industry. Assistance in aligning military C.V’s to target a Construction audience.”
What would you say to anyone getting involved? “It is a good way to meet people of all different ranks and abilities and is rewarding when a mentee progresses into civilian working life. In helping others it also provides time to reflect on my own career path and experiences”
From your experience, what is the main advice you would give to our ex-military personnel? “My advice would be to persevere and remain patient. Project programmes and start on site dates, often dictate when opportunities for employment are available, so keep in regular contact with all potential employment leads. The Construction Industry has many opportunities on offer that are not site based and not obvious to people looking at a Construction career.”