Jones Bros encourages companies to sign the armed forces covenant26th Jun 2024

A leading civil engineering firm is encouraging businesses across Wales to sign the armed forces covenant.

Jones Bros Civil Engineering UK joined a group of more than 140 North Wales-based companies when it formally committed to the pledge in 2022.

The armed forces covenant is the nation’s guarantee to those who proudly protected the country with honour, courage, and commitment.

It is a pledge that those who serve or have served in the armed forces, and their families, should be treated with fairness and respect in the communities, economy, and society they served with their lives.

And as Armed Forces Day is celebrated on Saturday 29 June, Jones Bros duo and military veterans Tony Murphy and Jonathan Dennehy are urging others to follow in the Ruthin-headquartered firm’s footsteps.


Tony, head of business management systems and support at Jones Bros, said: “I would advise any businesses to investigate what veterans bring. Look into skills we take for granted, such as communication, organisational, and leadership qualities.

“Those that have served have written, logistical, people management, and administrative skills, as well as the capability to give clear and concise instructions that people understand. These are abilities that are transferrable across any business.”

On recommendations to companies when interviewing a veteran, Tony, who spent more than 22 years in the army between 1990 and 2012, continued: “Look at what they did throughout their careers including the environments they had to work in, especially when it comes to managerial, technical, and logistical capabilities.

“Where they’ve operated with those talents is often in extreme circumstances and weather conditions, they can cope with quite a lot, and they bring that skillset and a positive can-do attitude to any operation.”

Quality and business improvement manager Jonathan, who served for 24 years in the army, agreed, adding: “When that soldier, sailor or aviator walks through your door, don’t look at the qualifications, look at the person and what they have done.

“What I have noticed about civilian work is that people are very good in their lane, they know their lane very well – left, right, up, and down – but you ask them to stray out of that and they panic. They either can’t do it or are reluctant to do it.

“In the military you do that your whole career, so you can get a person qualified in their job, but if there’s something you need them to do differently later down the line they can easily step across and help.

“What has been learned in those diverse sectors can then be brought back to the everyday role, which is something I’ve already been able to do a few times with Jones Bros.”

Cabinet secretary for North Wales and Transport Ken Skates MS, who leads on policy in relation to the country’s armed forces and veterans, said: “Our service leavers and veterans bring unique and valuable experience which can benefit all sectors.

“I’d like to thank Jones Bros and all the other businesses across Wales who are backing the armed forces covenant.”

Tony Fish, the Ministry of Defence’s (MOD) regional employer engagement director for the Reserve Forces and Cadets Association for Wales, said: “We thank Jones Bros for its continued backing of the covenant and its desire to be further recognised through the defence employer recognition scheme.

“In addition to directly employing veterans and service leavers, businesses can also show their support to defence through employing reservists, spouses, and partners of serving staff, cadets force adults volunteers, and sponsoring cadet units.”

Established in the 1950s, Jones Bros owns one of the largest plant fleets in the UK and employs approximately 500 people.

The company is currently working on contracts in various sectors including highways, flood and marine defence, waste management and renewable energy around the UK.

The company runs an award-winning apprenticeship scheme, which has produced nearly 40 per cent of its current workforce, with many of its senior managers having started out as apprentices or in a trainee role. It has recruited more than 100 apprentices during the past three years.