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sercoVets - supporting our North American veteran, reservist and military spouse colleagues

Around the world, we are proud to employ and support thousands of prior military service personnel and reservist colleagues.

In North America, veterans represent approximately 20% of our workforce. Such is our commitment to supporting this community that Dave Dacquino, Serco Americas Chief Executive, recently led his peers in encouraging industry leaders to participate in the US Department of Labor’s Veteran Apprenticeship Pilot Program. The program is enabling transitioning service members to leverage military technical skills and adapt them to the needs of civilian workplaces through paid on-the-job training.

“We see this as a great program to find talented and mature employees and to support our commitment as employers and fellow Americans to employ our veterans,” said Dave and his co-authors. “The transitioning military community boasts a proven strong work ethic, retention rates that out-perform those of their civilian counterparts and can diversify your workforce and enhance your workplace culture.”

Within Serco, we have been ramping up our own efforts to support our North American veteran, reservist and military spouse colleagues, including the launch of a new employee resource group dedicated to doing just that, sercoVets.

With a leadership team comprising veterans from every part of Serco Americas, and executive sponsorship from Tom Watson, Senior Vice President – Defense Services, the sercoVets network is helping the business to attract, hire, develop and retain US and Canadian Armed Services veterans and military spouses.

“For every colleague who is a veteran, military spouse, family member of veterans, or an ally who supports them,” said Tom Watson, “sercoVets is a platform for engagement, camaraderie and collaboration with others who share that background, and an opportunity for giving and receiving support to connect and grow as professionals.”

The group aims to accomplish its mission by promoting the recruitment of veterans, participating in relevant initiatives and activities, providing transition support, supporting professional development, facilitating networking and leveraging veteran and military spouse knowledge and experience.

“Veterans are an outstanding source of talent,” said Tom Watson, “because many have the knowledge, experience, skills, clearances and strong work ethic necessary to help us and our customers be successful on our important programs.”

“I remember the anxiety and uncertainty during my transition off active duty. I was greatly helped by several previously retired colleagues that shared their transition experience and lessons learned. I now enjoy sharing my experiences with other transitioning or former service members.”
- Michael Anderson, Vice President, Logistics Personnel and Readiness; sercoVets leadership team member

sercoVets hit the ground running in July 2020, helping to drive significant progress in its first half year alone.

For example:

  • facilitating a new partnership between Serco and the military/veteran families charity, Fisher House Foundation, as the focus for the Company’s annual holiday season ‘donation drive’. From 23 November to 31 December, Serco Americas and its colleagues raised a total of $15,000 for the foundation;

“As a long-time supporter of Fisher House, I was thrilled to learn that SercoVets had selected them for their holiday charity drive. The work they do keeps military veterans and their families together in times of critical need. This is an outstanding way to show that we care.”
- Kyle Cormack, Director, IDIQ (Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity) Service Center; sercoVets member

  • helping to raise funds and facilitate alternative arrangements, in response to Covid-19, for combat-wounded US military servicemen who would otherwise have taken part in the annual Armed Services YMCA ‘Hearts for Heroes’ therapy respite fishing trip events supported by Serco and founded by Serco employees in 2012;

  • producing Serco America’s first ever Veterans/Remembrance Day ‘Salute to our Veterans’ video, recognising and communicating Company and colleague appreciation for the service of veteran employees;

“I am a veteran with 34 years’ service and maintain a close relationship with numerous active and retired members. Having the ability to provide career opportunities to these same members is an honor and privilege as it is about doing good things for my second family.”
- Thomas Wheeler, Program Manager, 5 Wing Goose Bay Site Support Services Contract; sercoVets leadership team member

  • promoting access to learning resources specifically for transitioning veterans, such as the course ‘Finding your purpose after active duty’, through the Division’s new online learning platform;

  • creating a sercoVets Mentoring Program that brings together veterans, reservists and military spouses from across Serco Americas to focus on helping one another adjust to civilian workplace culture, discuss career goals and aspirations, and create a sense of belonging to improve veteran retention and success in the workplace;

  • the launch and impact to date of sercoVets was a significant factor in Serco being recognised for its commitment to veteran recruitment, retention, and professional development with a 2020 HIRE Vets Gold Medallion Award from the US Department of Labor. The ‘Honoring Investments in Recruiting and Employing American Military Veterans’ (HIRE Vets) Medallion Award Program is based on a variety of criteria, ranging from veteran hiring and retention to providing veteran-specific resources, leadership programming, human resources, and compensation and tuition assistance programmes.

“I’m a retired Commander Royal Navy after 26 years of service as a Weapon Engineering Officer. I’m really looking forward to engaging with my veteran colleagues in North America. I think this is a great initiative where we can encourage one another, share wisdom and maybe remind everyone that someone ‘still has your back’.”
- Jason Reid, Program Manager, 5 Wing Goose Bay Site Support Services Contract; sercoVets member