Veterans Day is a time-honored tradition in America, a time to recognize and thank the members of the United States military for their commitment to our country.
Unfortunately, after the fanfare of this nationally recognized holiday has passed, many military veterans are still finding themselves without the resources needed to successfully transition back into civilian life. This process can be stressful enough, but when a job hunt is added to the situation, that stress is only multiplied.
Thankfully, recent studies have shown encouraging signs in regards to hiring conditions for veterans in a changing business landscape. Consider these statistics:
- The Veteran Job Search Activity Index is 78, meaning more veterans are looking for jobs compared to recent years.
- The Employer Hiring Index remains strong at 68, indicating a strong enthusiasm and motivation to hire veterans among employers.
- However, 62 percent of veterans indicate that they feel hiring managers and recruiters do not understand their skills and experience.
With that in mind, here are a few tips for military veterans who are in search of a new career:
Make a Plan
Your military service may have ended, but a different set of challenges awaits you. Before diving head first into the job market, take some time to reflect on the skills and qualifications you have gained during your time in the service. Having a clear understanding of your career goals, strengths and limitations will help you to create a roadmap for success. Now is the time to build an updated resume, craft an engaging cover letter and decide which positions will allow you to thrive.
Translate Your Experiences
Through your military experiences, you have expanded a unique skill set that will certainly be an asset for the right company. However, the true value of your background can be lost under a sea of technical jargon, cryptic acronyms and other military-specific phrasing that can confuse a potential employer.
Instead, try to translate these skills into characteristics that can be more widely understood. A great resource for this conversion can be found on Military.com. This skills translator tool can serve as a starting point for transforming your armed forces history into civilian job titles.
As you work through this transitional period, it is important to remember that you are not alone! As fellow veterans face similar challenges, they too will be looking for a helping hand. By discussing your plans with family members, friends and colleagues you may find unexpected support. Your local veteran’s office may also offer job-assistance program to help get you started.
As we take the time to thank our veterans, it’s important to remember that support doesn’t need to end when Veterans Day does. Hopefully, these tips can help make the transition easier for veterans and their loved ones.