Women In Business

10 Reasons why your business should hire military veterans

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Employers typically want job candidates to show loyalty, integrity, and respect for the organization they work for. On top of those basic criteria, some jobs require specialized skills as well as physical prowess — not always an easy bill to fit. But many employers don’t realize that there are candidates who can easily fulfill all those requirements.

When you hire a veteran of the military from superbly-trained defence forces like those of the US, UK and Australia, you’re getting an employee who’s used to respecting the rules, working with a team, and performing under pressure. In fact, you could be hiring a trained hero. Yet, somehow, there are still hundreds of thousands of unemployed military veterans in the US, UK and Australia — 370,000 in the U.S. alone, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

It’s foolish to let this fantastic resource remain untapped Let’s take a closer look at why hiring a vet may be the best decision you ever make.

10 Reasons to hire a vet

  1. Ability to learn quickly. Veterans have to think and learn on their feet and are used to constantly picking up new skills and concepts. Also, they come to the workforce with identifiable, transferable skills, tested in real-world situations. For example, they might need to take a civilian certification course, but a number of vets know how to operate heavy equipment. Someone who’s operated tanks, troop transports, cranes and other heavy equipment in combat situations is likely to do a great job for your construction or transportation enterprise.
  2. Leadership. The military teaches service personnel to lead by example instead of merely giving random commands, so vets often know how to inspire and motivate their team and peers through motivation, clear direction, and meaningful delegation. Further, military veterans understand how to manage behavior for results, even with difficult employees or when facing tough deliverables.
  3. Teamwork. Veterans know teamwork grows out of a sense of responsibility between colleagues. Because military performance measures include both individual and group productivity, vets understand how groups are interdependent in achieving a common goal.
  4. Diversity and inclusion. Veterans work side-by-side with individuals of diverse gender, race, geographic origin, religion, ethnic background, and economic status, as well as varying physical, mental and physical capabilities. They are great candidates to effect change in polarized workplaces and can often serve as role models for more biased employees. Plus, hiring someone with military experience increases diversity in the organization.
  5. Performance under pressure. Veterans are used to tight schedules, limited resources and shifting conditions for operations. They have the capacity to complete tasks on time, even under great stress, and stick with a task until it’s done. Managing logistics and following a chain of command hone skills that are directly transferable to operations and customer service positions.
  6. Respect for procedures. Veterans value accountability and respect within an organization. They know how policies and procedures make it possible for an organization to execute the vision of the leadership team so that everybody benefits. They tend to excel at managing customer interactions.
  7. Technology and globalization.  Many vets serve abroad and are exposed to other cultures, which is a valuable resource to have in any enterprise. Also, because of their service opportunities, veterans are typically up to date on technology trends that impact business and industry. Along with tech savvy and a global worldview, most veterans have learned how to cope with relocation in order to fulfill their duties.
  8. Integrity. Veterans typically put in long hours to get the job done, thanks to the enhanced sense of integrity they developed during military training. Prospective employers often spot the advantage that sincerity and trustworthiness bring to any workplace.
  9. Awareness of health and safety standards. Through their extensive physical training, veterans are keenly aware of the importance of health and safety regimens that impact themselves and others. They typically maintain an elevated level of personal health and fitness. These skills make them uniquely qualified to protect company property, employees and materials. Vets also learn CPR and other life-saving skills that enhance their value as employees.
  10. Mental toughness. In addition to dealing effectively with issues of personal maturity, military veterans often have to overcome great adversity. Frequent trial-by-fire situations encountered on mission-critical tasks require flexibility, stamina, and endurance. If you think the world of business can often resemble a combat zone, who else would you rather have on your team?

Skills that come with hiring a hero

Despite their possible lack of experience in the civilian job market, the vast majority of former military members have wonderful characteristics that give them advantages over other job seekers. Veterans are detail-oriented, dependable team players with integrity, and hiring someone who’s served in the armed forces brings a sense of leadership and critical thinking skills to the workplace.

More information on hiring veterans

Governments have great programs that help employers connect with veterans to help reduce the unemployment rate among those who’ve served their country. Here are some great resources to help employers connect with vets:

United States:

UK:

Australia:

About Brad Miller

bradm@thebusinesswomanmedia.com'

Brad Miller is a Marine Corps veteran who comes from a military family with a long tradition of service. He and his brother created The Military Guide as a “straight shooters handbook” to provide helpful resources to service men and women at every stage of their military careers – from those first timid steps into the recruiter’s office to walking proudly off base with a DD-214 as a newly minted veteran and beyond.

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