Diversity & Inclusion

Hiring Military Veterans Makes Sense

U.S. troops have already begun leaving some Iraqi cities, and we now are about a year away from the target deadline the Obama administration has set for pulling a significant number of combat troops out of that country. The United States has more than 140,000 men and women currently serving in Iraq, all of whom we hope will be returning home and most of whom will someday return to the civilian workforce.

Additionally, there are thousands of employable veterans searching for jobs now. To remind you why military veterans make such good employees, the people at http://www.dol.gov/vets/ have put together a list of the top 10 reasons to hire vets:

1. Accelerated Learning Curve. Veterans have the proven ability to learn new skills and concepts. In addition, they can enter your workforce with identifiable and transferable skills, proven in real-world situations. This background can enhance your organization’s productivity.

2. Leadership. The military trains people to lead by example as well as through direction, delegation, motivation, and inspiration. Veterans understand the practical ways to manage behaviors for results, even in the most trying circumstances. They also know the dynamics of leadership as part of both hierarchical and peer structures.

3. Teamwork. Veterans understand how genuine teamwork grows out of a responsibility to one’s colleagues. Military duties involve a blend of individual and group productivity. They also necessitate a perception of how groups of all sizes relate to each other and an overarching objective.

4. Diversity and Inclusion in Action. Veterans have learned to work side by side with individuals regardless of diverse race, gender, geographic origin, ethnic background, religion, and economic status as well as mental, physical, and attitudinal capabilities. They have the sensitivity to cooperate with many different types of individuals.

5. Efficient Performance Under Pressure. Veterans understand the rigors of tight schedules and limited resources. They have developed the capacity to know how to accomplish priorities on time, in spite of tremendous stress. They know the critical importance of staying with a task until it is done right.

6. Respect for Procedures. Veterans have gained a unique perspective on the value of accountability. They can grasp their place within an organizational framework, becoming responsible for subordinates’ actions to higher supervisory levels. They know how policies and procedures enable an organization to exist.

7. Technology and Globalization. Because of their experiences in the service, veterans are usually aware of international and technical trends pertinent to business and industry. They can bring the kind of global outlook and technological savvy that all enterprises of any size need to succeed.

8. Integrity. Veterans know what it means to do “an honest day’s work.” Prospective employers can take advantage of a track record of integrity, often including security clearances. This integrity translates into qualities of sincerity and trustworthiness.

9. Conscious of Health and Safety Standards. Thanks to extensive training, veterans are aware of health and safety protocols both for themselves and the welfare of others. Individually, they represent a drug-free workforce that is cognizant of maintaining personal health and fitness. On a company level, their awareness and conscientiousness translate into protection of employees, property, and materials.

10. Triumph Over Adversity. In addition to dealing positively with the typical issues of personal maturity, veterans have frequently triumphed over great adversity. They likely have proven their mettle in mission critical situations demanding endurance, stamina, and flexibility. They may have overcome personal disabilities through strength and determination.

Help Finding Veterans to Employ

There are nearly 2,000 One-Stop Career Centers nationwide where employers can go to receive assistance in connecting to and recruiting veterans. One-Stop Career Centers offer a wealth of resources including specialized local Veterans’ Employment Representatives  and Disabled Veterans’ Outreach Program staff who work solely with veteran populations and can provide relevant veteran applicant referrals. To find out more about One-Stop Career Centers or to find one near you, go to www.hirevetsfirst.gov/onestop_emp.asp. Or call 1-877-US2-JOBS for direct assistance.

1 thought on “Hiring Military Veterans Makes Sense”

  1. As a fairly large government employer, I disagree with several of these “top 10.” Their skills are often not transferable because their training sometimes just skims the top, rather than being in-depth. Many also have a sense of entitlement that isn’t always deserving. They may have worked with many different races, ethnic groups, etc, but some of them are the most prejudice of any of our employees. Resources in the military are seldom scarce. Not sure how to respond to the “honest day’s work” reason – I don’t think military people are any different than the general population – some have good work ethic, some don’t in about the same % as non-military. Drug use in the military is rampant and is often not left behind. In addition, some of those men and women who join the military do so because they were unable to succeed in a non-military world – once they don’t have those protections of Uncle Sam and Aunt Sammie, they are even more screwed up than when they entered the military. In summary, there are good vets and bad vets and they mirror the regular population.

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