Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Veteran Employment Summit Reveals Increase in Veteran Hiring



Following the first National Veteran Employment Summit on December 12, 2012, Monster and Military.com have released a report detailing findings and recommendations for both hiring and retaining veterans. 

The Summit was composed of senior military and government officials, academic leaders, human resource professionals, and military veterans and covered the issue of veteran employment from the veterans’s viewpoint, as well as the employer’s and the government’s. The resulting report, which provides five key recommendations for employers, provides a sunny forecast for veterans transitioning into the civilian sector. 

Despite a seven percent drop in career confidence, according to the Veterans Talent Index, employers are increasingly hiring veterans. The same index shows that 69% of the 750 employers surveyed, hired a veteran in the past year. 99.9% said that they were doing as well or better than their nonveteran peers. And nearly all would recommend hiring a veteran to another company.

According to the report, there are two main challenges facing transitioning veterans today: they feel pigeon-holed in their military occupational specialty (MOS) and they feel unprepared for the civilian job market. Both of these hurdles can be overcome when both veterans and employers work to better understand one another. 

Veterans can surmount the first hurdle of skills translation by  spending more time relating their military skill sets to corporate job skills. My Next Move is a very useful resource  introduced as part of the White House’s Joining Forces initiative where you can search for career fields based on your interests, browse career fields by industry, or, most importantly, enter your MOC and translate it directly to a civilian career field. 

And while translators like may not be the final word on what you are qualified for, they can give you keywords related to your MOS that might point you in the direction of your new career. You can also visit Transition Corner, which covers this topic in depth.

Veterans feeling unprepared for life outside the military will find a new level of support and training in the newly revamped Transition GPS program. Developed by the Veterans Employment Initiative Task Force, Transition GPS will be implemented by the end of 2013 and will extend the transition program period from 3 days to 5-7 days; strengthen, standardize, and expand counseling and guidance for service members before leaving the military; and transform the military’s approach to education, training, and credentialing for service members. 

Now is a great time to begin searching for a civilian career, as veteran employment has never been so prominently featured in the national discourse. American companies are increasingly recognizing what a talented group our nation’s veterans are and are turning to these job candidates to find the future leaders of their companies. 

Kevin Schmiegel, Vice President of Hiring Our Heroes at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce spoke at the Summit and said it best: "[Veterans] are team players, they have an incredible work ethic, they can change a business fundamentally and improve productivity.” 

Click here to read the report in full.

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