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America's Heroes at Work — Veterans Hiring Toolkit

Step #1 — Design a Strategy for Your Veterans Hiring Program

Congratulations on taking the first step toward creating (or enhancing) your Veterans hiring initiative!  The steps in this section are a few of the basic elements to help you begin your planning.




Become familiar with the benefits of hiring transitioning Service Members, Veterans and wounded warriors

Consider your organization's overall mission and decide how strategically incorporating this population of jobseekers fits best into your global recruitment efforts. Though some employers may be looking to hire Veterans due to a sense of patriotism, most are seeking out this community of job seekers because of pure return on investment. Veterans and returning Service Members bring unique skills and experiences to the civilian workforce. Because of the training, work ethic and goal-oriented culture of the military, many companies report that Veterans not only make excellent employees, but also tend to have a higher rate of retention. There are many reasons why companies are seeking out Veterans - the most important being that they bring with them the skills to do the job, in a timely and efficient manner. These skills include both the hard and soft skills coveted by today's employers, such as leadership, management, teamwork, accountability and responsibility.

Read the "Top Ten" reasons to hire Veterans and wounded warriors.

While Veterans and transitioning Service Members tend to have a similar set of non-tangible skills, each is an individual and should not be "pigeonholed" into a position or career pathway simply because of their military service. A post-military career path has as much to do with training skill sets as it does with personality, interests and individual goals. Though some sources have attempted to identify the top civilian jobs for transitioning Service Members and Veterans (see Online-Education.net's "Top Ten" and Money Magazine's "Top 20"), it is important to consider there are many industries not identified in which Service Members can apply their knowledge and skills.  For example: medics with strong communications skills may target a position in public relations for a hospital or pharmaceutical company, a civil affairs specialist who enjoyed learning about new places and cultures may be an excellent high school history teacher, or a truck driver who picked up a photography hobby while deployed may seek employment with a travel magazine or as a documentarian.

Resource Alert!

An excellent resource for learning about these tax incentives can be found on The Sierra Group Foundation's Website, a 501(c)(3) dedicated to improving employment opportunities for people with disabilities. Clear and concise information for both federal and state tax incentives is available. Simply choose "Federal Incentives" or "State Incentives" from the navigation menus on the top or left hand side of the main page.