Strategic impact: Amey's integration of social value in Defence

Tom Silvey, Director of Defence
26 June 2024
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Thought Leadership article by Tom Silvey, Amey Defence Business Unit Director Amey has been proudly delivering services to the Armed Forces for more than 100 years. Through targeted social value and employment initiatives we deliver focused support for military personnel, their families, and veterans. These individuals make sacrifices for our country every day and it is our duty as a society to support them in return.

Our original commitment to families began as a simple yet profound principle rooted in the belief that prioritising the wellbeing of families is fundamental to creating a more supportive society. What started out as a commitment has now become a shared journey towards creating an environment where everyone is valued, supported and empowered to thrive. 

We recently celebrated the second anniversary of the Central and North Regional Accommodation Maintenance Services (RAMS) contracts on behalf of Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO). As part of this we published our second year Social Value Report which provided me the opportunity to reflect on the complexity of Defence contracts. These involve multi-faceted projects requiring a deep understanding of the military community alongside specialised knowledge of construction, design and infrastructure that meet the military standards and specification.  

Doing the right thing  

Amey’s presence across 125 UK military bases affords us a unique position to support the DIO and their stakeholders to deliver on the UK Government’s commitment to supporting veterans through OP PROSPER and social value more widely.   

One of Amey’s key ESG focus areas is to enhance the wellbeing of people and communities we impact  and we are proud to report that we have generated £9.3 million in social value to the Defence community to date, with a 96% performance score on our social value initiatives. 

We are committed to collectively transforming the infrastructure we maintain to benefit people, places, and our planet. This aligns closely to the government’s own social value model, which supports a culture of trust, enhances value creation, meets stakeholder expectations, and drives innovation and collaboration. By prioritising social value, we can contribute to a more inclusive, sustainable, and resilient future for society and the economy. 

Empowering military families

We have put considerable effort on the ground to contribute to local, relevant social value initiatives that are seen and felt by our client and the families we serve.  

A key example of this is the introduction of our Customer & Community Engagement Officers (CCEOs) who are embedded across the estates we manage. They play a critical role in supporting and empowering military families by building connections, improving their lived experience, and providing resources to help military families thrive.  

Our CCEOs also establish regular community groups at each estate, gather feedback, and work with families to identify and address issues that impact on their lived experiences. They build relationships and seek out initiatives that bring local communities together.  

Putting our MoD Gold Employer Recognition Scheme award into practice

Amey is a signatory to the Armed Forces Covenant and recently secured a five-year revalidation under the MOD’s Gold Employer Recognition Scheme for its exceptional support to the Armed Forces. This acknowledges Amey’s long-term commitment to the military community and highlights our sustained support to implementing forces-friendly initiatives. 

We know that those who have served in the Armed Forces have a unique set of transferable skills. In Amey’s Complex Facilities business, 170 individuals have been recruited from the military community over the last three years, enabling Amey to learn first-hand experience and insight of the military community to gain authentic understanding, and appreciation for the realities of military life.  

Partnerships with Buildforce, the Careers Transition Partnership, Forces Transition Group, SSAFA, and the Royal British Legion Industries (RBLI), among others, help to facilitate our engagement with veterans and service spouses. The recent relaunch of our Armed Forces Network has also created a dynamic community that unites veterans, military spouses, reservists, cadets, and allies with a shared passion for the armed forces. We collaborated closely with our learning and development team to enhance offerings such as our tailored employment pathway, Service to Success, co-designed by veterans for veterans.  

Service to Success builds on the success of the Elite Armed Forces Veterans programme.  Launched earlier this year, the Elite Armed Forces Veterans programme provides senior military personnel tailored opportunities to leverage their leadership experience while acquiring new skills for a rewarding career at Amey. 

In addition, Amey’s longstanding 15-year partnership with RBLI supports veterans and people with disabilities, securing employment for five veterans annually since 2008. This partnership has generated over £4.3 million, providing £730,000 of social value. Through RBLI's Britain’s Bravest Manufacturing Company (BBMC), Amey has procured over 26,000 signs from BBMC in 2023 alone. The surplus generated is reinvested to create further employment opportunities and support RBLI’s welfare initiatives for vulnerable veterans. 

Supporting social enterprise

In 2021, Amey seed funded e50k, a social enterprise led by military spouses and veterans. This initiative supports our Move You In Pack Project providing eco-friendly hampers with products from veteran and spouse-led organisations for Service families relocating to new homes.  

All profits from this project are reinvested back into e50k and the groundbreaking Bramblewood project at Catterick Garrison, aimed at revitalising outdoor spaces cultivating meaningful relationships with local community and providing skills for employment. This collaboration has resulted in 86 military spouses gaining employment. 

Leaving a legacy in the communities we impact

For the families who benefit from our social value initiatives, these programmes are more than just support mechanisms. They are transformative experiences that can profoundly impact their lives in positive and meaningful ways. They offer hope, opportunities, empowerment, connection, growth, and a brighter future. 

Amey remains dedicated to supporting veterans, ensuring they receive the training, mentorship, and resources required to succeed. By investing in the future of military personnel, we are strengthening its workforce and honouring the commitment the UK’s Armed Forces have shown to the country.  

For more information, please visit Amey’s career pages: Veterans and Service Leavers 

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