Hiring a Veteran: Why and How to Do It
Thanks to the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011, more veterans and active duty reservists are finding employment opportunities that help them remain productive members of society who are able to care for their families. More and more, companies are discovering the benefits of hiring veterans, many going as far as to alter jobs in order for disabled or injured veterans to keep them. In fact, hiring veterans can be quite beneficial for the companies involved. Read on to learn more about hiring a veteran.
Hiring Veterans Can Boost Business
One thing many employers realize as they work to learn more about hiring a veteran is that doing so boosts business. In an effort to entice companies into hiring veterans, especially those who are injured or disabled, the government now provides tax credits to businesses who do so. The amount a business receives in tax credits is based on several factors including how much the veteran works, when he or she was hired, the amount he or she earns and whether he or she is injured or disabled. In addition to tax credits, many companies find they receive a boost in business simply because many people are sometimes more willing to shop in establishments that prove their patriotism by hiring veterans.
Veterans Are Ethical Employees
Another thing quickly discovered when an employer decides to learn more about hiring a veteran is that veterans are very ethical, sometimes more so than their civilian counterparts. Integrity is one of the most important teachings in the military. Veterans are taught to do their jobs by working closely with their team members, but they also know how to take care of issues on their own and they always take personal responsibility for their actions. Veterans have the ability to work under authority and within strict guidelines and they understand the consequences of failing to do so.
Veterans Are Already Trained
As they learn more about hiring a veteran, many employers are excited to find out that veterans not only are already highly trained in one or more fields, but also that they can receive ongoing education free of charge via the government. The specialized training in engineering and manufacturing, computers, medical fields or other industries allows them to begin working without as much training as civilians might require. What training veterans do need is often easier to accomplish because they have been taught to learn quickly and to multitask. In addition, veterans have a strong focus on completing their tasks right the first time in order to meet deadlines and provide the best product or service possible.
How to Hire Veterans
Once employers learn more about hiring a veteran, they often want to know how to actually begin the hiring process. The first step is to have a good understanding of military culture. The hiring manager should understand the military’s values, structure and expectations, all of which work to create strong relationships. These values and expectations translate to the veterans’ work outside of the military, creating better relationships between employees and employers.
Once the hiring manager has an understanding of the culture, he or she must write a job description that appeals to veterans. It is important to use military terminology in the description, especially if the job is specifically related to people who have a background in the military. Additionally, the description should be very specific to show veterans how the skills they learned in the military could translate to and be relevant in the job’s field. The hiring manager might consider using the O’NET Military-Civilian Crosswalk, which provides Military Occupational Classification Codes. Including these codes in a job description makes it even easier for veterans to see how they can apply their skills in the field.
Once the hiring manager sets up interviews with veterans, it is important to ask the right questions. Focus should be on military training, of course, but should also be on civilian experience. When interviewing a veteran, it is important not to ask questions about discharge status, possible future deployments, or where they were during past deployments. Doing so could be considered fishing for information on the veteran’s medical history such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and might be grounds for a discrimination accusation.
Above all, a hiring manager that wants to learn more about hiring a veteran should be sure he or she is doing so for the right reasons. Never hire someone only for the tax breaks or to be patriotic. Ensure the veteran also has the right skills for the job. To learn more about hiring veterans or running a better business, check out the other articles and tools on Mighty Recruiter.