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May 16, 2019   |   Blog

Supporting our veterans to find valuable career opportunities

It is common knowledge our Chief Executive, Roy Mellon, started his career in the Australian Army.

Growing up, Roy always wanted to serve his country, but unfortunately due to developing chronic osteoarthritis, he was forced to leave his dream job by the age of 19.

Fast-forward 15 years, Roy is now Chief Executive of the Definitiv Group. However, his transition from the Army to civilian life wasn’t exactly smooth sailing.

It’s because of Roy’s background that Definitiv is a proud supporter of Working Spirit, a not-for-profit organisation, dedicated to helping transitioning veterans find rewarding civilian careers.

Founded in November 2016 by Royal Australian Air Force member, Karyn Hinder, Working Spirit is an employment agency connecting Australian businesses with highly skilled ex-Defence service personnel.

Working Spirit works in partnership with a number of corporations such as MacMahon, Rio Tinto, Sodexo, Airflite, Downer and MACA Mining.

Karyn started the organisation, Working Spirit, after a very dear friend and colleague was experiencing difficulties settling into mainstream life and was struggling to find civilian employment.

The motivation behind Working Spirit, resonates strongly with our Chief Executive and he knows of so many former colleagues who would find Working Spirit’s services extremely valuable.

Roy said, ‘Throughout my years, I have met a number of talented soldiers, who are not only hard workers but are also highly skilled and yet have struggled to find employment once they have left the ADF.’

‘I am living proof that our soldiers have so much value to give to companies. I may have a physical injury, but I am not broken or damaged, a common misconception held about soldiers. If anything, my experience has made me mentally tougher and it has made me determined to prove I am capable or even more capable than the next person.’

Roy and Definitiv were so passionate about Karyn’s Working Spirit venture, we sponsored her in the Prince’s Lead Your Own Business Program (PLYOB) in 2016. After undertaking the program, she was invited by the US Chamber of Commerce to learn about the United States Military Transition programs.

Using her findings from her visit to the US and her objectives for the organisation, Karyn went on to officially launch Working Spirit in late 2016. Since the launch, Karyn has taken the organisation from strength-to-strength, from helping her first fellow serving member to get full-time employment in January 2017 to now helping many former military personnel find rewarding employment opportunities.

To help veterans with their transition to a civilian career, Working Spirit runs a Corporate Fellowship Program, networking events and the Military to Civilian Career Summit. Plus, since September 2018, Working Spirit has been contracted by RSL WA to provide employment services to members and veterans of the ADF.

The Corporate Fellowship Program allows veterans to gain valuable unpaid work experience in a field they wish to pursue. This work experience program is a great way for the service member to gain work experience in a field they are interested in, and for the company to get a feel of how the service member could potentially fit into their team.

Karyn said, ‘The biggest support we have received so far is the invaluable advice, leadership and support from Roy. He has been amazing in helping Working Spirit move forward and I appreciate the time and contribution he has made to the organisation. I cannot thank in words the support I have received from Roy and Definitiv.’

Want to hire skilled veterans?

If you are a company looking for a pool of highly skilled and talented employees, register your company with Working Spirit here.

Are you a veteran looking for employment?

Alternatively, if you are a former or transitioning ADF member looking for employment, upload your resume here or attend an upcoming Working Spirit event. Visit the Working Spirit website here to view all their upcoming events.