How to Attract Veterans to Your Company

By Madison White on October 18, 2016

Trying to attract any group of job applicants is tough. Trying to attract military veterans as a non-military person can be extremely confusing. Knowing where to start, how to find resources, what to provide, amongst other things may seem like too much just to target one group.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

However, attracting young military veterans, many fresh out of college, can be an equally easy and rewarding experience for all parties involved. Once you get to know what they’re looking for and how to find future applicants, the rest is fairly simple.

Here are five steps to follow that help attract veterans to your company.

1. Use existing military job sites.

One of the perks of trying to attract veterans is that it usually only requires a little bit of effort on your part. Lucky for you, many established websites already exist solely for veterans and want the job postings that you have. The military has viable options that span across the internet and other media to help you reach veterans even if you don’t really know where to start in the first place.

A great place to launch from is by posting some jobs on military based job sites. Some of these sites include: Military.com, HireVetsFirst.gov, TurboTap.org, HelmetstoHardhats.org and USAJobs.gov. Another great perk about military funded programs, is that often these are free of charge.

Unlike other website with large visitor bases, military websites will get just as much traffic without you having to pay. It’s a win-win for both.

2. Train the rest of your staff.

What happens a lot of time when businesses are looking to employ veterans, is that a huge disconnect can occur between military and non-military personnel. Because of the distinct differences that happen between training of people, the way they interact may be very different. Understanding the way a veteran might address someone or participate in the group work setting is something to discuss and train all your other employees for.

If they recognize what to expect and what is normal, they’ll find ways to be more inclusive. Without this in the workplace, it is easy for veterans to feel excluded from the workplace which can lead to them leaving. This isn’t the result you would want if you’re focused on being military friendly. Overall, just make sure you know what to expect and that your other employees do too.

3. Be familiar with military jargon and resumes.

Another problem with hiring military veterans is that their resumes will look far different than a non-military one. Because of this, it may seem like they lack experience when really they have a wealth of knowledge. Often, it is not hard to do your research beforehand to understand how to read and judge a military resume.

You could also reach out to other veterans in your life to help you gain a little experience when it comes to the terms. It’s also healthy to remember that veterans may act differently during the interview process. Often, they are marked against for displaying a lack of interest in the company, when really they’ve just been trained to behave in that manner. Being aware of what actions they may have picked up will help you judge them fairly against the competition.

4. Provide military support and guidance.

Like I said earlier, exclusion can be a massive detriment to veterans. The military focuses a lot on camaraderie and if they do not have the same kind of feel in the workplace, they may become very unhappy at their job.

To combat this, and this will become easier with the more veterans you hire, try setting up workplace mentorship programs. This can help working veterans help other veterans transition into the non-military workforce without the added stress. It also gives them an innate sense of belonging among the group.

Also, don’t be afraid to show off that you support your military employees. Some businesses offer special gear to military employees or hold certain events in their honor. Just make it known that you value them as employees and that they are wanted within your workplace group.

5. Build a military-friendly reputation.

In the military, a reputation can go a long way. If your company establishes a great reputation for hiring, appreciating, and working with veterans, the word of mouth will travel to other veterans faster than you can imagine. Like anybody would, veterans value their necessity to the group. They also value loyalty and camaraderie as stated before. By keeping up with your promises in your company and taking care of all your employees, not just your military veterans, you ensure a great reputation that will carry you through many years to come.

Many of these things also come with just being as active of a member in the military community. Just going out and talking with veterans can help you gain a wealth of knowledge about what they want in a career. Many opportunities like career fairs can assist in this, as well as visits and presentations. To learn more about this, visit here.

By Madison White

Uloop Writer
Wichita State University
My list of places traveled is growing but will never exceed my list of places to travel next.

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