Veterans are defined as anyone who has served for at least one day in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces (regular or reserve) or Merchant Mariners who have seen duty on legally defined military operations.
A Service Leaver is a term for someone who is in transition from or has ceased to be a member of HM Armed Forces.  The term ‘Service Leaver’ is typically used in legal documents, as understanding and use of the term veteran does vary, not least amongst those who have served.  Many former Armed Forces personnel in the UK do not define themselves as ‘veterans’.
In 2013, BAE Systems was the first Defence Company to sign up to the UK Armed Forces Covenant, cementing its commitment to supporting those who serve, have served and their families. 

In April 2021 BAE Systems proudly renewed this commitment at Gold Standard to also include:

  • Working with the Career Transition Partnership
  • To recognise the valuable skills and experience that veterans bring to our business
  • To provide support through our Veterans Network Resource Group
  • Helping our employee reservists meet their training commitments by providing 15 days of Special Paid leave each year
  • Supporting the rehabilitation of wounded, injured and sick Service personnel through our sponsorship with Invictus UK and the Open University’s Disabled Veterans Scholarship Fund
  • Working with partners, such as Recruit for Spouses, to offer mentoring and coaching to Service spouses and partners
  • Advertising employment opportunities in our business on the Forces Families Jobs portal
  • Continuing our long-term partnerships with Armed Forces Charities

VetNet is working on a series of new initiatives such as building an external portal which will allow potential candidates to post questions directly to a veteran member of BAE Systems.


Our goals:

  • To be mutually supportive to all ERGs and Sponsors
  • ERG Steering Board to provide mentoring and/or training to other members of VetNet and/or other ERGs
  • To partner and support HR and recruiting with Career Transition Partnership events
  • To form strategic partnerships and initiatives in the UK and internationally aligned to the Armed Forces Covenant
  • To provide a frictionless transition for veterans and improve support for reservists.
  • To support the corporate D&I message
  • Not only do veterans and reservists offer a deeper understanding of what our Defence customers expect. Our experience within BAE Systems will help us become a more attractive employer for ex-servicemen and women, by informing our recruitment strategy and tapping into that talent stream so much more than we currently do
  • By joining the VetNet ERG, It’s a great opportunity for everyone to better understand this strand of our people and to better support those that have supported us previously, in a fair and transparent manner

VetNet Projects:

We are going to be increasing our social media profile and promoting our veteran integration programme (‘Walking into BAE’ in collaboration with Walking with the Wounded) and active involvement in promoting and raising awareness of VetNet.
We also will be supporting various charitable events, as well as promoting and participating in annual events such as Armed Forces Week and Armistice Week.
Our monthly newsletter ‘SitRep’ is distributed across our business units and we host a number of fireside chats and external speaker webinars throughout the year.

Become a part of VetNet:

So far, VetNet has grown to over 475 members across the UK wide and we are also growing internationally, assisted by our international BAE Systems VetNet partners located in Australia, India, Saudi Arabia, Sweden and the USA. We believe there are many more veterans and reservists throughout the company that we’d like to reach out to and be a part of the ERG.
Supporters and allies are welcome to join VetNet too – you do not need to have a military background.

Learn more about our support for the Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) below. If you would like to find out more about VetNet, or would like to partner on future events or initiatives, please get in touch. Explore Diversity and Inclusion at BAE Systems