TechVets aims to get UK military veterans into cybersecurity
To address the IT skills shortage, as well as rates of unemployment amongst military veterans, TechVets is launching an initiative that trains ex-servicemen and women in cyber skills to help them get jobs in the sector.
According to TechCrunch, there are 220,000 unemployed veterans of working age in the UK, and 45% of businesses say they have a shortage of cybersecurity experts. TechVets is a non-profit that addresses these problems with schemes such as the Digital Cyber Academy (developed with support from Immersive Labs), which will start providing free cybersecurity training to service leavers and military veterans when it launches on 8 March.
It was founded by ex-army major and entrepreneur Peter Connolly, cybersecurity specialist Mark Milton and army reservist and corporate-financier Euan Crawford. TechCrunch founder Mike Butcher will also be joining the company as co-founder and advisor.
“Around 15,000 people per year leave military service in the UK, and while they are highly trained, hard-working, bright minds, they typically do not find their way into the tech industry due to predominantly a lack of connections,” Connolly explained. “We aim to address this missed opportunity by the TechVets programme bringing in veterans to help build our digital future.”
Once vets have received their training the scheme will help them find jobs in businesses that require the specific skillsets – cybersecurity knowledge alongside leadership, crisis management and problem-solving skills – those that have been in active military roles have commonly obtained.
TechVets will work closely with the UK government and other charitable organisations to match veterans with roles in many of the businesses the founders have connections with.
“The UK government is committed to making the UK a secure and resilient digital nation, this programme supports that goal by recognising the unrealised human potential of our veteran community to address our cyber skills shortage,” Milton explained.