FAQs – Signing the Covenant
Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about signing the Armed Forces Covenant are provided below, under the headings of:
- The process
- Customising your pledge
- Promoting your pledge
- Finding signatories
- Resolving disputes
1. What are the criteria for signing up to the Covenant?
To sign the Covenant, you must agree to demonstrate its two core principles: that no member of the Armed Forces community should face disadvantage in the provision of public and commercial services compared to other citizens; and that special consideration may be appropriate for some members of the community, especially the injured or bereaved.
2. Who can apply to sign the Covenant?
Businesses of all sizes, charitable organisations, local authorities, and public sector organisations can all apply.
3. Do we have to be registered in the UK?
Foreign registered businesses can apply to sign the Covenant as long as they have a registered office in the UK. Some exceptions apply for UK Overseas Territories. For more information about this, please contact email@example.com.
4. What are the criteria to meet to be awarded the Employer Recognition Scheme’s bronze, silver and gold awards?
The Employer Recognition Scheme guidance outlines the criteria to meet to be awarded the bronze, silver and gold awards.
5. What is the process of signing up to the Covenant?
If you’re interested in signing the Covenant, get in touch with your local Regional Employer Engagement Director, who will be able to guide you through the signing process. After expressing interest, you will receive a pledge certificate by email to print off and sign.
6. Do you have a template we can use?
Yes, a template can be found here: template.
7. How much does it cost?
There is no fee for signing the Armed Forces Covenant.
8. Where can we find our Covenant pledge?
You will receive a physical copy of your Covenant pledge after the signing.
9. Can an organisation go from a bronze Employer Recognition Scheme award straight to gold?
There is no fast-track process, organisations looking to enhance their Employer Recognition Scheme journey will start at bronze and move through each level of the award scheme.
10. Do Covenant pledges expire?
No, your commitment to the Covenant does not expire. Your Employer Recognition Scheme award is to be renewed every five years.
11. Our organisation has changed its name since signing the Covenant. Does this affect our pledge, and how can it be updated?
Pledges under old organisation names are still valid, but best practice would be to conduct a re-sign. This can be organised by engaging with your local Regional Employer Engagement Director.
Customising your pledge
12. Can we customise our pledges to fit our company?
Yes, your Covenant pledge can be tailored to your organisation’s needs and capacity. You decide how you will demonstrate your support by writing your own pledges or by choosing pledges from a provided list of suggestions.
13. Can we arrange a signing event?
Yes, many organisations choose to hold a signing ceremony to publicly demonstrate their commitment to support the Armed Forces Community and sign the document in the presence of Armed Forces representatives, with the support of the local Regional Employment Engagement Director and representatives from local military units.
14. How long does it take for the entire signing process to be completed?
There is no definitive timescale for the process to be completed, as each request to sign the Covenant is taken on case by case basis.
15. How long do we have to wait for due diligence to be completed?
Due diligence is an integral part of the process. This enables us to understand the organisation, their commitment, and monitor their journey in receiving their correct accreditation. For this reason the process can take some time, but we aim to have it completed within a week.
Promoting your pledge
16. Can we get the Covenant logo?
On completion of your signing, you will be sent the Armed Forces Covenant digital toolkit, which includes the Covenant logo. If you require another toolkit please contact us. Please also see the Covenant brand guidelines.
17. When can we promote our Covenant pledge?
You will be able to promote your Covenant pledge once you have received your certificate of signing.
18. Where can I find a list of the Covenant signatories, and what each organisation has pledged?
You can search for businesses who have signed the Covenant. This spreadsheet provides a list of the current Covenant signatories, and the specific pledges by each organisation.
19. Our organisation has signed the Covenant but is not appearing on your website. When will our organisation be listed?
Organisations are usually listed within a few weeks of signing, but this is subject to due diligence checks and processing.
20. Where can I find a list of the Employer Recognition Scheme’s bronze, silver and gold award recipients?
The Employer Recognition Scheme guidance has links to lists of the bronze, silver and gold award recipients.
21. Who enforces Covenant pledges?
There is no formal enforcement mechanism, but organisations not fulfilling their pledge can have their Employer Recognition Scheme award reviewed and in certain circumstances removed.
22. Who do we contact to complain?
For enquiries and complaints about Covenant pledges, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.