Ren Kapur MBE joined a guest line-up, hosted by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and funded by Cambridgeshire Combined Authority, to discuss how local businesses can better support ex-service personnel into their journey to employment and entrepreneurship in Huntingdon recently.
Other speakers included former veterans Nick Smith and Denis Mulholland, Kristina Carrington (MOD) and Victoria Barr (Cambridgeshire County Council).
The Veteran’s Work Survey highlighted a wealth of potential skills in the ex-service personnel talent pool and the commercial benefits to the organisations who hire them as well as challenges and barriers this group of employees face in civilian life. The research highlighted more than half of veterans found their actual salaries differed from pre-transition expectations.
Ren is founder and CEO of X-Forces Enterprise (XFE) Community Interest Company; the UK’s largest provider of enterprise and business support to the military community.
Ren is a Lt. Col in the British Army Reserves and was awarded an MBE for her service to Entrepreneurship in the Queen’s 90th Birthday Honours List. Ren was appointed the first ever volunteer Armed Forces Champion for small businesses by FSB.
Speaking to small business owners, Ren said: "Service personnel thrive under pressure and are used to delivering against tight deadlines. A career in the armed forces promotes flexibility, loyalty, self-discipline, reliability, a strong sense of duty and commitment, the ability to use initiative and the ability to cope with change."
Jade Uko, Development Manager at FSB added: "Small business owners tell us in Cambridgeshire that they face real skills shortages and struggle to recruit talented staff.
"We wanted to hold an event which encourages businesses to look at the community of ex-service personnel as a skilled, recruitment pool and encourage them to sign up to the Armed Forces Covenant. We are committed to supporting those who have served their country."
The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly. To find out more about the Armed Forces Covenant please visit https://www.armedforcescovenant.gov.uk/