For those who have served in the Armed Forces, returning to civilian life can be challenging. That said, around 340,000 (six per cent) of small businesses are run by ex-military personnel. What’s more, more than one-in-ten (12 per cent) small businesses have employed a service leaver in the last three years.

These are encouraging statistics. However, an FSB report suggests that more could be done to support military veterans.

Our report recommends an enhanced support package for those transitioning out of the Armed Forces, including a greater focus on the option of self-employment and the key skills needed to succeed in enterprise.

Setting up and running your own business requires courage, determination and a strong work ethic. These are attributes which service leavers have in abundance.

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That’s why self-employment is a route well worth considering by those coming towards the end of their time in the Armed Forces. Similarly for those seeking employment, small businesses can often be better than bigger ones at spotting and nurturing talent – recognising qualities that lie outside of a traditional academic route. At the same time, employers would benefit from a simplified way of understanding and recognising the equivalence between military skills and civilian qualifications.

Our report also recommends more financial support for those service leavers in need of further training and qualifications to achieve their post-military ambitions. Furthermore, it calls for a one-year holiday from Employer National Insurance Contributions for small businesses that employ service leavers.

These measures would deliver very real benefits. After all, many of the skills developed within the Armed Forces community are in high demand in the commercial world. They include cyber security, drone technology, telecommunications, logistics, prosthetics, and artificial intelligence, to name just a few.

These extremely valuable skills must not be lost to the commercial world. Instead, we should make every effort to ensure that they are capitalised upon to the benefit of all involved.