Helping a Veteran Find the Right Fit | DCR Workforce Blog

Helping a Veteran Find the Right Fit

veteransLike DCR Workforce, many American employers have launched programs to further the employment opportunities of veterans. Many more employers out there may also be equally committed to and enthusiastic about doing their duty by Veterans who have selflessly served America and its people. Unfortunately, some of them may not be pursuing this enthusiasm to its logical conclusion, mainly out of an uncertainty about how a Veteran could fit their company and the civilian roles it has on offer.

Through their military service, most veterans develop skills that are directly applicable to the workplace. The U.S. military is a high tech operation. Service personnel receive extensive training in the use of highly sophisticated equipment. They also develop critical “soft skills” associated with leadership, initiative, and teamwork. The challenge for employers and veterans is to recognize how to translate skills developed through military service into civilian roles.

A number of approaches and solutions help to make this possible, some of which are listed below:

  • Employers should waive the need for the education and work credentials of a Veteran to match those of a civilian applicant if their tenure with the army has provided them with the skills required for the job. This is particularly true for many positions in healthcare, transportation, logistics and electronics.
  • Provide Veterans with on-the-job training in needed skills and offer development opportunities leading to better job satisfaction.
  • Set yourself apart as a proactive employer by offering “credit” towards seniority and eligibility for vacation or other benefits for military time served.
  • If you know there is a fit with the job you are offering, try using military language in your job description and posting.
  • Advertise your wish to recruit Veterans through credible sources, with work with Veterans groups to source candidates for your open positions.
  • If unclear as to the job title of the Veteran applicant while on duty, try and identify their capabilities through open-ended questions which elicit detailed answers. Ask the candidate to describe their military job functions, challenges faced and successfully overcome (or not), role played in the team, the cost and quantities of resources/equipment/logistics managed. Responses will uncover the skill sets acquired while on duty.
  • Create an opportunity for the Veterans at your workplace to form a support group where they connect with some senior employees who are also Veterans. They may also be mentored to get through the transition period.
  • Provide secure, highly confidential assistance when reaching out to the various support programs and local community groups, State and Federal Government agencies for medical, financial or emotional support.

All Veterans are, without exception, highly disciplined and organized. Do let them know that they are held in high esteem for their service to the nation. Assure them of your commitment to provide them with reasonable accommodation in this transitional phase. Offer accommodations for any physical injury or disability they may have suffered in action. Let them know what deliverables are expected from them and sit back to enjoy the ride.

Remember, with more Veterans scheduled to be demobilized, there is no time like now to become a military-ready employer.

The content on this blog is for informational purposes only and cannot be construed as specific legal advice or as a substitute for competent legal advice. They reflect the opinions of DCR Workforce and may not reflect the opinions of any individual attorney. Do contact an attorney for advice specific to your issue or problem.
Lalita is a people/project manager with extensive experience in operations, HCM and training and development across industries like banking, education, business consulting, BPO and information technology. She believes in a dynamic approach to life and learning as change is the only constant.