Andy Dawson joined the NHS after 20 years of regular service, and two years as a reserve prior to his regular career.

Throughout his military service, Andy held various appointments within the Royal Logistics Corps, such as staff officer, training commander, procurement/R&D, operational logistics and specialist projects.

Andy joined the NHS as a facilities contract monitoring manager on a fixed term appointment. Since then, he has become Deputy Head of Facilities (Support Services) at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust (progressing from a band 8a to 8c) and has recently taken on additional roles and now has transport and security amongst his portfolios. Andy also has several veterans within his team which Andy said has added “a new dimension to my experience being useful in the workplace”.

When asked what drew him to the NHS, Andy said “I began my second career in private healthcare upon retirement from regular Army service, I was drawn to the NHS for career development reasons. ICBs, trusts, hospitals, directorates, all align to Division (equivalent to NHS Region)  Brigade (ICB) , Battalion (NHS Trust) , Squadron (equivalent to hospital) quite nicely”. Andy says he uses his “critical analysis, people skills (in particular being able to communicate across a broad range of colleagues) and decisiveness” regularly in his day-to-day role.

When asked what challenges does he feel he faced as a member of the Armed Forces community when seeking employment and how did you overcome them? Andy said “the main challenge was balancing delivering what is expected of a military person, while combatting stereotypes at the same time. Dealing with a non-military workforce took some adjustment and having a set number of hours a week to work was both a blessing and a curse”.

Andy’s three top tips for someone also looking to step into an NHS career from the Armed Forces are:

  • Try to align your military role to a civilian one in your CV and explain abbreviations.
  • Talk about ‘I’ and ‘we’ in equal measure when describing your experience.
  • Understand that your self-confidence may be a little scary to some people.
Andrew Dawson wearing a suit


UpSolution Team