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Barclays launches military reservist graduate programme

Stuart Tootal

Barclays encourages university graduates to pursue a civilian career while being able to continue military service with the Army Reserves.

Students who have passed their University Officers’ Training Corps (UOTC) Army Officer Selection board can fast track straight to the final interview round at Barclays.

Successful applicants to also benefit from Barclays’ bespoke Reservist policy which includes additional annual leave. Until recently, graduates wanting to serve in the Armed Forces have often had to put a civilian career on hold while they pursue their military career.

Now Barclays Armed Forces Transition, Employment and Resettlement (AFTER) programme is championing a third option, doing both, with a bespoke entry process for university students who want to apply to the Barclays Graduate Programme and at the same time be part of the Reserves.

Under the streamlined process, any graduate with a pass at Army Officer Selection board can fast track straight to the final interview round for the Graduate Programme. This means they avoid duplication between the Reserve and Graduate Programme assessment days, leapfrogging three rounds of assessments and significantly speeding up their application.

Last year, over 300 students successfully secured a place on the Barclays Graduate Programme. Under the programme, entrants are able to undertake placements across the business and benefit from dedicated mentoring before securing a full time role.

Should Reservists applicants be successful in gaining a role within the bank, they will benefit from Barclays bespoke military reservist policy which has been put in place to ensure Reservists receive the support they need to balance the significant commitment of their parallel career. This includes an extra 10 continuous working days’ paid leave per year for Reservist training and, if they are mobilised, Barclays will also continue to pay full salary and will conduct pay reviews and performance bonuses as normal with a role held for the course of the mobilisation.

Additionally, they can join the Barclays Military Network (BMN) and meet with other Reservists and ex-military colleagues.  The BMN has over 350 members and as well as offering networking, it also offers mentoring and career support advice.

Stuart Tootal, Head of Barclays Armed Forces Transition, Employment and Resettlement (AFTER) programme said, “Reservists play a vital role in supporting our country, but they also play a vital role within our workforce as the skills they learn not only compliment but enhance their civilian careers.

“Whilst we attract superb graduate candidates, we don’t want to miss out on the top talent from the Armed Forces. That is why we are now accepting their military selection as the mark of quality we recognise for accessing our fast track graduate programme.”

Eliot Goward, Graduate at Barclays and Army Reserve said, “Deciding what to do after university is difficult, particularly if you’re caught between choosing a military or civilian career. Too many graduates think it needs to be one or the other, but this new initiative enables you to have the best of both worlds. You not only enjoy the benefits each career brings individually, but also build a number of transferrable skills between the two.”

Since its inception in 2010, AFTER has supported over 5,000 service leavers and hired nearly 500 ex-military service personnel of all service and ranks into a range of jobs across the company.

In addition to offering support to colleagues who are part of the Reserves, Barclays AFTER programme hosts a number of initiatives designed to support veterans with their transition into the civilian workplace including CV and Interview workshops, military talent days, internships and placements.

Barclays was also one of the first companies to obtain the coveted Military Covenant Gold standard in recognition for its support to veterans and reservists.

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