Armed Forces Covenant
The first duty of Government is the defence of the Realm. Our Armed Forces fulfil that responsibility on behalf of the Government, sacrificing some civilian freedoms, facing danger and, sometimes, suffering serious injury or death as a result of their duty.
Families also play a vital role in supporting the operational effectiveness of our Armed Forces. In return, the whole Nation has a moral obligation to the members of the Naval Service, the Army and the Royal Air Force, together with their families. They deserve our respect and support, and fair treatment.
Those who serve in the Armed Forces, whether Regular or Reserve, those who have served in the past, and their families, should face no disadvantage compared to other citizens in the provision of public and commercial services. Special consideration is appropriate in some cases, especially for those who have given most such as the injured and the bereaved.
This obligation involves the whole of society: it includes voluntary and charitable bodies, private organisations, and the actions of individuals in supporting the Armed Forces. Recognising those who have performed military duty unites the Country and demonstrates the value of their contribution. This has no greater expression than in upholding this Covenant.
Section 1: Principles of the Armed Forces Covenant
1.1 We Atos will endeavour in our business dealings to uphold the key principles of the Armed Forces Covenant, which are:
No member of the Armed Forces Community should face disadvantage in the provision of public and commercial services compared to any other citizen
In some circumstances, special treatment may be appropriate especially for the injured or bereaved.
Section 2. Demonstrating our Commitment
2.1 Atos recognises the value serving personnel, reservists, veterans and military families bring to our business. We will seek to uphold the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant, by:
Promoting the fact that we are an armed forces-friendly organization; internally to our employees and externally through our supply chain relationships and communications.
Maintaining and enhancing a dedicated diversity group called the Armed Forces Network (AFN) to plan, co-ordinate and deliver our actions in support of the Armed Forces Covenant. The AFN steering committee will meet monthly to review our delivery on Covenant pledges and report to an executive sponsor.
Seeking to support the employment of veterans by working with the Career Transition Partnership (CTP) and Officer’s Association (OA) to establish a tailored employment pathway for service leavers.
Striving to support wounded, injured and sick veterans, including by working with charities to offer work placements in support of ‘back to work’ initiatives.
Partnering with a veterans’ mental health charity, Combat Stress, to raise awareness of service-related mental health conditions and fundraising to support the charity’s treatment of former service men and women.
Establishing a mentoring programme to offer support to service leavers seeking employment with civilian organisations including Atos. Assisting them through the application process or preparing mentees to be work ready with volunteering, education and training.
Providing support to service spouses and partners by endeavouring to offer a degree of flexibility in granting leave for before, during and after a partner’s deployment.
Working with charities such as FFJ to offer “Returnship” placements and support back-to-work initiatives specifically for service families.
Supporting our employees who choose to be members of the Reserve Forces, including by accommodating their training and deployment where possible and by granting an additional ten days paid leave, as per our Reservist HR policy, to allow attendance at annual training camps and courses.
Engaging with our reservist workforce and their units, to provide maximum support before, during and after mobilization.
Promoting our commitments to the Reserve Forces within our graduate, intern and apprentice programmes to encourage interest in becoming a Reservist.
Increasing awareness within Atos of Armed Forces’ Day and Reserves’ Day through internal communications and events.
Continuing to support London Poppy Day and other Remembrance events nationally through specific activities at Atos locations and Digital communications and fundraising using internal channels.
Supporting Forces charities, such as the National Memorial Arboretum, through regular fundraising activities and volunteer support visits.
Advocating support for the Armed Forces community by speaking at industry events and inviting partners to participate in our AFN activities.
Championing the Armed Forces Covenant by encouraging our supply chain and partners through the Covenant signing and Employee Recognition Scheme processes and providing mentoring support to applicants.
Sponsoring Armed Forces Sport through the Team Ethos Sports Foundation; assisting athletes to compete at the highest level and increasing the opportunity for injured troops to take part in sport.
2.2 We will publicise these commitments internally to employees and promote the work of Atos’ Armed Forces Network through PR, Public Affairs and online.