Job hunting can be difficult for anyone, but it can be especially challenging for veterans. Although many veterans succeed in transitioning from the uniform to civilian, the process isn’t always a smooth and seamless one. By focusing on showing employers how your general skills and the discipline you acquired in the military is a priceless asset to the company, finding fulfilling employment can make the hope of stability and roots a reality.
Tips for Veterans looking for employment
Joining the military puts you in a career field and trains you for a military-specific career, but that doesn’t mean it’s your dream job. As you learn your military specialty, you also have access to free education and training opportunities that could help you figure out what you want to do.
Here are some resources and tips to help you figure out your next step after service.
Start by considering what kind of work you want to do.
If you don’t think military occupation is your forever job, you aren’t alone. About half of the military begins their service without knowing what they want to do, with a small percentage of recruits staying until retirement.
Try taking a career assessment, which considers your aptitudes and preferences. There are free and paid options available. Alternatively, working with a career counselor or mentor can help you find work that will bring you fulfillment. If you find a career that sounds interesting to you, interview some professionals in that field to get a fuller understanding of the pros and cons of the job.
Use your military experience to your advantage.
Members of the United States military develop leadership, technical expertise, and problem-solving skills that make them highly valuable to employers.
- U.S. veterans are highly adept in soft skills like customer service, teamwork, and leadership.
- They are multi-disciplinary and have a history of successful cross-training in various situations.
- Veterans are team players loyal to their organization.
- Once a veteran finds their niche inside an organization, they are more likely to be promoted and become leaders.
- Researchers have also found that veterans can be easier to manage than their civilian counterparts.
Use your experience to highlight these benefits in interviews and networking events.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Government and non-government resources are available for active and discharged members of all branches of the military in Colorado. The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment’s Veterans‘ Employment and Training Services Department is here to help employers and employees navigate the benefits and protections provided to U.S. veterans, National Guard, and Reserve members. Contact Holly Van Liere, MSW, in Denver at (303) 318-8821 for more guidance.
Plant Your Roots in a Veteran-Friendly Community
Veterans make up nearly 10 percent of the adult population in Colorado, higher than the national average of 6.6 percent. Located centrally between six military bases in Colorado, Miller’s Landing is a mixed-use development that offers an attractive opportunity for work-life balance for employees and customers who serve in or have retired from the military. With plenty of areas to get outdoors, relax and meet with others professionally and for fun, you’ll love your civilian life in the fifth wealthiest county in the United States.