ERS Gold Awards for 16 organisations

November 7, 2022
Gold Award banner

Sixteen employer organisations had their outstanding commitment to the Armed Forces recognised at the 2022 Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Gold Awards.

The prestigious event was held in the Great Hall at Stirling Castle on November 3.

The recipients represented a diverse range of organisations and companies including some from Councils, the NHS, Chambers of Commerce, and charities.

The regional event was hosted jointly by Highland and Lowland Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Associations.

Nationally, 156 organisations received the award and recognition from the UK Government for their support towards the Armed Forces community.

Of the winners, 44% are either micro-organisations or small and medium sized enterprises, while 33% are public organisations. This demonstrates both the growth in numbers and the depth of supportive employers.

Recipients in the Highland RFCA area: Abertay University; Dunbartonshire Chamber of Commerce; Dundee & Angus Chamber of Commerce; Fife Council; Meldrum Construction; Moray Chamber of Commerce; NHS Forth Valley; Sport Aberdeen; Louise Worrall Wealth Management.

The Highland RFCA-area winners with Major General Wright and Commodore Quinn.

Recipients in the Lowland RFCA area: Arnold Clark Automobiles Ltd; GalloGlas Group Ltd; Inverroy Crisis Management Ltd; Joint Force Alba Ltd; Poppyscotland; Sked Construction; St Andrews Timber & Building Supplies (WEST) Ltd.

Guests at the event included: General Officer Scotland Major General Bill Wright; Head of the Reserves Commodore Martin Quinn; Regional Commander for Scotland and Northern Ireland (NRCSNI) Brigadier Andy Muddiman; Deputy Commander of HQ 51st Infantry Brigade Colonel Tony Phillips; and Air Officer Scotland AVM Ross Paterson.

Music was provided by Private Murray from 7SCOTS and The Royal Marines Scotland Corps of Drums.

The Royal Marines Scotland Corps of Drums gave an excellent performance.

General Wright said: “I’m delighted to have been asked to represent the Secretary of State for Defence, Ben Wallace, at the 2022 Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Awards for Scotland. Having presented the Silver awards in the Highland area last year it is particularly nice to see some familiar faces coming through to the Gold level within 12 months.”

He then spoke about the various mobilisations Reservists have been involved in over the past year, adding: “There is a common thread throughout all of these mobilisations, and the many other Reservists on operational tours going on around the world right now – the employers.

“Your willingness to allow and support members of your workforces to become members of the UK’s reserve forces is quite possibly the most important deciding factor for the potential Reservist. Your foresight in recognising the benefits the employer gains from the considerable number of military and specialist skills that are readily transferable to the civilian workplace and vice versa, is commendable.

“I thank you very much on behalf of the Secretary of State for making the decision to commit to this level of support.”

Commodore Quinn said: “It is tremendously encouraging to see such a variety of businesses and organisations from across Scotland winning the Gold Employer Recognition Scheme Award this year.

“These awards distinguish those employers who continually seek to support both past and present members of our Armed Forces. I would like to thank each and every one for their invaluable efforts.”

Private Murray of 7SCOTS piping in the Great Hall.

● Representing the highest badge of honour, Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Gold Awards are awarded to those that employ and support those who serve, veterans and their families.

The Employer Recognition Scheme Gold Awards continues to grow in strength each year, with a current total of 642 holders. Organisations must reapply after five years in order to retain their Gold Award status.

To win an award from the Ministry of Defence, organisations must show that they provide 10 extra paid days leave for Reservists and have supportive HR policies in place for Veterans, Reserves, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers and spouses and partners of those serving in the Armed Forces.

They must also advocate the benefits of supporting those within the Armed Forces community, by encouraging others to sign the Armed Forces Covenant and engage in the Employer Recognition Scheme.