Since 2018 the British Ex-Forces in Business Awards have celebrated the post-military achievements of over 1,500 veterans and reservists at events which have been attended by thousands of employers across the UK and engaged with by millions more online. This year has seen another record-breaking number of nominations, and SA Group has been shortlisted in five categories, including Advocate of the Year for the company, and Business Leader of the Year for CEO and Founder Steve Jackson.

The challenges involved in carving out a meaningful second career after serving in the Armed Forces are well documented. The Ex-Forces in Business Awards were formed seven years ago to tackle these issues head on via a grand showcase of veteran talent. The awards programme has led the way globally in demonstrating the huge value that veterans add to employers and the wider economy after leaving the military.

SA Group has been supporting veterans with their new careers in since it began, and it recognises the challenges that arise from returning to civilian life. The company promotes an open and honest internal culture to support this process, and as a result has been shortlisted for the second year running at the British Ex-Forces in Business Awards, this time for Advocate of the Year.

Founder and CEO of SA Group for over 15 years, Steve Jackson is a finalist in the Business Leader of the Year category. Judges are looking for an individual who has demonstrated outstanding business leadership in the last 18 months.

The judges have recognised Jeremy Osborne as a finalist for Outstanding Achiever of the Year. This category recognises an outstanding business achievement in the last 18 months from somebody who used to serve in the forces.

Role Model of the Year nominee Karen Briddon was selected based on her past service of almost 10 years in the Armed Forces and time in the Police Force where she gained valuable skills in empathy, active listening, and interpersonal communication.

Chris Barnard is a natural leader with the responsibility of over 50 consultants and associates at SA Group and having held a number of management roles during his time in the Army, which is why he has been shortlisted for the Team Leader of the Year Award.

The Ex-Forces in Business Awards is one of the highest attended award ceremonies in Europe, and has been dubbed ‘the Oscars of veteran employment’. This year’s event takes place on Thursday 27 June at Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London. BBC Newsnight presenter Victoria Derbyshire will host the Awards and introduce a programme of live entertainment and guest speakers including three-time Olympic rowing champion Pete Reed OBE and a yet to be announced senior Whitehall official.

Ben Rossi, founder of the British Ex-Forces in Business Awards, said: “The incredible achievements documented through the 900-plus nominations we received for this year’s Awards are simply staggering. The fact they have been enabled by skills and values gained in the British Armed Forces should leave employers in no doubt of the value veterans offer.

“We are proud of the role these Awards play in showcasing and championing the veteran talent pool. The Ex-Forces in Business Awards evidence very clearly that supporting the transition of servicemen and women into meaningful second careers is not just the right thing to do, or a tick in a CSR box – it’s a tried and tested route to acquiring exceptional talent who will add enormous value to your business. Congratulations to all of this year’s finalists and thank you for serving as such tremendous role models for service leavers.”