Ex-Military Personnel Successfully Complete Military2Rail Training

Posted by Barry Pearson on January 13, 2016  |   Comments Off on Ex-Military Personnel Successfully Complete Military2Rail Training

Ten former military personnel graduated on 18 December from Wiltshire College, following six weeks of intensive training as part of Siemens Rail Automation’s new ‘Military2Rail’ initiative. The group completed a mixture of work-based and college training which was delivered and funded by a partnership between Siemens and Wiltshire College.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony, David Attmere, himself a former Warrant Officer with the Royal Engineers and now a Project Director with Siemens said: “There is a real skills shortage in the rail industry, which cannot be remedied by recruiting apprentices, graduates and trainees alone. We have developed this initiative specifically for former armed forces personnel; ready-trained and highly-skilled individuals who I am confident will become first class rail engineers. But not only will they bring much-needed technical skills to our industry, they are also highly motivated and loyal. Above all, they have proven leadership and team-working skills which will be invaluable.”

Siemens worked closely with the Careers Transition Partnership and Help for Heroes in establishing this programme and identifying potential candidates. Having now successfully completed the training programme, in January each of the ten trainees will be taking a permanent position within Siemens, in roles including Design Engineers, Testers and Installation Team Leaders. An eleventh individual who applied for the course, already had the required industry skills and was offered immediate employment.

Help for Heroes offers career recovery support to those who have become wounded, injured or sick during their time in service. Susan Turnbull, Head of Career Recovery at Help for Heroes, said: “When an injury occurs, it can change your life instantly and, before you know it, what you thought would be a career for life has gone. Suddenly you are left with the feeling of “What next?”

“Through our Career Recovery programmes, we help injured servicemen and women identify a new fulfilling future. We believe the skills of servicemen and women, such as communication, problem solving, leadership and teamwork, make them highly employable and valuable to the civilian workplace. We are extremely grateful to Siemens for offering three of our wounded heroes a new and purposeful career outside of the Armed Forces.”

Rob Hand, Deputy Director at the Wiltshire College’s Chippenham campus said: “The Military2Rail programme has been a fantastic opportunity to introduce service people into a much needed area where there is a skills shortage. It has enabled the candidates to transfer their skills from the services to a national company and it has been an absolute pleasure to work with them and Siemens.”

On completing the course, Paul Wilson who served for 10 years with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers said: “Since leaving the Army in 2012, I have received fantastic support from Help for Heroes who are helping me deal with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and prepare for a new career. I have been searching for a meaningful job where I can fully utilise the skills that I gained in the Army and was absolutely delighted to be chosen for the first Military2Rail training programme. I am now really looking forward to working with a new team of people in Siemens’ Chippenham office where I will be taking on the role of Trainee Signal Design Engineer.”

Siemens Rail Automation is a global leader in the design, supply, installation and commissioning of track-side and train-borne signalling and train control solutions. Its portfolio includes train control, interlocking systems, operations control systems, components, track vacancy detection, level-crossing protection, rail communications, cab radios, station systems and cargo automation for both passenger and freight rail operators.

Siemens employs over 14,000 people in the UK, with 1,650 people working in the Rail Automation division from offices in Chippenham, London, Croydon, Poole, Birmingham, Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Manchester, York, Glasgow and Newport. For more information, visit www.siemens.co.uk/rail.