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Service personnel, service leavers, and veterans have been given a boost by the launch of a skills discovery tool designed to support their career pathways beyond military service.

Although service personnel can bring a wealth of valuable skills, experience, and qualifications to the workplace, these can often be difficult for employers outside of the armed forces to recognise. 

This unique tool helps by recognising and translating the skills, experience and qualifications gained during service into language more easily understood by learning institutions and employers outside the armed forces, so will support ex-military personnel to gain employment or move into further learning. It also allows serving personnel to better understand the skills and qualifications they are gaining in order to plan their careers both within and outwith the armed forces.

The easy-to-use tool allows a veteran or service leaver to select their role, rank, cap badge or trade from a range of armed forces roles and select those most relevant to them. They are then given a pre-filtered list of qualifications that they can use to select those they have completed. The results will highlight the range of transferable skills that they have gained and will use these to provide suggested job roles that they would be suited to.

The SCQF Partnership, working together with the Ministry of Defence and Skills Development Scotland, and funded by the Scottish Government and Scottish Funding Council, have developed this tool within Skills Development Scotland’s My World of Work website. It forms part of a suite of SCQF Partnership projects to promote and extend recognition of prior learning and skills across our education and employment landscape.

Cabinet Secretary for Justice and Veterans, Keith Brown MSP, joined Pauline Radcliffe, the Chief Executive of the SCQF Partnership, Veterans Commissioner for Scotland Susie Hamilton, Brigadier Wrench, Commander of 51st Infantry Brigade & Army Headquarters Scotland and Derek Hawthorne, Digital Development Manager for Skills Development Scotland, to launch the new resource at Edinburgh Castle.

During the visit Mr Brown and other invited guests had the opportunity to chat to service personnel and see the tool in action.

Veterans Secretary Keith Brown said:

“The Scottish Government is grateful for the work of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework Partnership and Skills Development Scotland in developing the Military Skills and Qualifications Discovery Tool. We are all too aware of the challenges that veterans can face when transitioning out of the military, which can sometimes include difficulties finding suitable and enduring employment, or that their experience and qualifications are not adequately understood and appreciated.

“I am therefore delighted to see the Tool being launched and I look forward to seeing the longstanding, positive impact that this will have for our veterans and Service leavers. I hope that it ensures no Service leaver feels their experience and qualifications are misunderstood or underappreciated again.”

Brigadier Ben Wrench commented:

"This skills discovery tool is a game changer for ‘translating’ the qualifications gained by service personnel whilst in Service into civilian recognised SCQF language. This is important to those that are serving, those transitioning out of their service and those now outside the Services. The support and collaboration between the MOD, SCQF Partnership and Scottish Government will be of benefit to many service leavers and veterans, continuing to assist employers to draw on the positive contribution service leavers make to their communities."

Ms Radcliffe said:

“The SCQF Partnership is delighted to be working in partnership with Scottish Government, Skills Development Scotland, the MoD and a wide range of partners to deliver greater recognition for the skills and qualifications held by ex- and serving military personnel. The Skills Discovery Tool enables the valuable skills and qualifications achieved by armed forces service leavers to be understood and harnessed by employers and learning providers, for the benefit of Scotland’s economy. The Tool is designed to help military staff and service leavers understand the skills, experience and qualifications they have gained, mapped against the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework, to better describe these to civilian employers, and find the path that is right for them.” 

Mr Hawthorne added:

“It’s been fantastic to work in partnership with SCQFP and Ministry of Defence on the skills and qualification tool. Throughout the project we’ve strengthened relationships between the partner organisations to deliver a product that will help users recognise the skills they’ve developed and how their qualifications relate to those in civilian life.”


Watch a recording from the launch


Click here to try the tool 


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The SCQF Partnership

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