Sappers Network is all about you – the serving and veteran Corps – Regular and Reserve. We are a brotherhood, and Sappers Network brings that to life, alongside benevolence, heritage, sport, and all the other stuff we do alongside the training and operational piece.
It all started in 2015 with a review of how the Corps could improve its image so as to enhance recognition (within the Army and outside it), retention and recruiting. And along the way – how we could ensure that there is sufficient money to continue to run the family bits of the Corps – heritage, benevolence, sport, adventure training etc. Among other things the review identified key messages, initiated a Corps website, more effective use of social media and other developments which will enhance image.
But for my taste the most important thing the review identified was a gap in terms of whole life connection between the Corps and leavers/veterans. For example I discovered through my work on the river in London a significant number of veteran Sappers with whom the Corps had long lost connection, but who connected in their own way – often on informal social media sites – both to keep in contact, and also to find employment. Their view was that the Corps should capitalise on this Sapper identify in order to enhance image, reputation and recruiting by helping people to find work. And as a bonus, this would support retention by giving the serving Corps certainty that in addition to existing MOD and Corps resettlement provision the Corps would give extra support to those Service Leavers who needed it – in addition to supporting Veterans for their working life.
So that is what Sappers Network is designed to do – to help you find jobs. Some of your colleagues thought of it, and it has the potential to benefit all of you. And it helps retention and recruiting too. Sappers Network will be run commercially by ex-Sapper professionals. Profit is not the main objective – you are – but any profit will be ploughed back into Corps funds to support benevolence, sport etc.
Sappers Network is the right thing to do – please use it.