Project Fortis

Connecting the Armed Forces community.

What is it?

Project FORTIS is an ambitious mission to extend Armed Forces’ networks and empower veterans.

At its core is next generation peer to peer technology that enables the Armed Forces’ community to connect directly with employers – to get support from their people, attend exclusive events and secure work placements and jobs – transforming the way that service leavers and veterans transition to civilian careers.

How it started

The Project FORTIS concept was born out of the work Richard Tyrie has done over the last three years with BT, through his groundbreaking social enterprise GoodPeople. BT is thus a founding partner of the Project FORTIS concept, alongside GoodPeople.

Transition force Strands image2 

The Armed Forces’ community is one of British society’s greatest assets

There are 1 million veterans of working age in the UK, with 20,000 leaving the forces every year.

Across British industry there is a skills shortage – engineering, healthcare, construction, professional services and IT being some of the worst hit industries. Unemployment is at a low of 5.5% in the UK, and yet there are 740,000 job vacancies in the country – close to the highest on record.

Veterans and service leavers demonstrate employability traits that are highly desirable to employers: anecdotal feedback from large veteran employers points to higher productivity rates, better customer handling and people skills, better long term retention rates, and better values and standards.

Project FORTIS enables the forces’ community to connect efficiently with employers…

Thanks to the digital revolution, the organisation of resources and labour is moving away from institutional and centralised models, and towards networks: Uber doesn’t own taxis, AirBnB doesn’t own hotel rooms, Facebook doesn’t produce content. Why? Because a network enables demand to find supply more efficiently.

 

What we’ve done and our next steps

We piloted Project Fortis as ‘Transition Force’ collaboratively with BT and developed a unique volunteering opportunity for BT employees that wanted to help those transitioning out of the Armed Forces – the BT Buddy. To date over 300 service personnel have attended 20+ workshops. 97% of attendees have been willing to recommend it to a friend and 97% of attendees found it useful or very useful. In the post‐event feedback, the BT Buddies were consistently mentioned as the highlight of the day.

In February 2014 we were funded by the Nominet Trust to create an online platform to scale and automate the process of connecting Service Leavers to corporate employees who can and want to help them. We have designed computer algorithms to be able to make these matches at scale.

As a social enterprise, Project FORTIS Ltd is soon to have B-Corp accreditation, that espouses the principles of responsible capitalism. By being a for-profit enterprise it is able to raise capital more efficiently, reinvest profits to enable preferential access for charities/MOD, and retain the best talent – accelerating social impact.

We are now focused on increasing the quality and scale of Project Fortis in order to dramatically scale the platform and its usership. To do this, we continue to grow the number of corporate employers we collaborate with thus supporting the project.

If you'd like to find out more about how you can support Project FORTIS, get in touch!