Metrics That Matter in Gauging a Veteran Hiring Program’s Success

How do you know if your veteran hiring initiative is actually successful? Are you testing for metrics that deliver the most organizational impact?

Many veteran hiring programs focus primarily on recruitment, with less effort placed on managing and retaining veteran employees once they are hired. However, the most successful programs track data beyond the initial hire.

Two metrics that factor critically into the success of any recruitment program are performance and retention.

###Measuring Success###

Tracking data like this can reveal overall strengths and weaknesses in a veteran hiring initiative:

• Number of veterans hired

• Percentage of total hires who are veterans

• Outside recognition (awards or publicity)

• How far veterans advance in the hiring process

• Range of business levels veterans are hired into

• Other examples of successful “veteran-friendly” branding efforts

Although useful, these metrics don’t tell the whole story. Many organizations do not collect metrics about veteran performance and retention. Yet it’s important to consider them to accurately assess the long-term impact that veteran hires have on an organization.

###Quality of Hire###

High performers help drive revenue and raise a company’s bottom line. That’s why securing the highest-quality talent is of paramount importance. For many organizations, that means hiring veterans.

Proseal America, a worldwide manufacturer in the food packaging industry, needed highly trained service technicians. Hiring veterans provided the right solution. A consistent stream of highly motivated veteran hires convinced the company’s leadership to continue onboarding military talent. Veteran hires supplied by [Bradley-Morris]( (BMI, parent company of RecruitMilitary) learned quickly and advanced faster through Proseal’s four-level tiered system for field service technicians, resulting in a higher ROI for the organization. Within one year, BMI candidates were nearly lapping other service techs in terms of progress.

Hiring veterans also helped Proseal earn the [Gold Medallion Award]( from the U.S. Department of Labor given to employers committed to recruiting, employing and retaining America's veterans.


Many employers do not collect or analyze performance data on their veteran hires. It can be difficult to correlate without established metrics in place. The Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) [reports]( that 68% of employers say veterans perform “better than” or “much better than” their civilian peers. Another [study]( found that veterans generally perform better in the labor market than non-veterans.

Don’t have metrics? Consider defining what “quality” means in your organization and pairing it with measurable goals. Follow up with a survey listing each criterion and requesting details about how veteran employees meet each standard.


Retention rates are a vital part of an accurate cost-per-hire analysis. Hiring costs don’t come just from direct expenses associated with hiring a new employee. They include costs associated with finding and training replacements. A 2019 [study]( by Employers Resource reports that it costs employers 33% of an annual salary to hire a replacement. That means $15,000 for an employee earning $45,000 a year. “Productivity costs” including knowledge lost, time spent finding a replacement, and the time new hires need to become fully functional are part of replacement cost as well.

Tracking veteran retention data compared to other employees with similar characteristics (education level, years of experience, salary level) could justify the resources spent on veteran hiring initiatives. SHRM [reports]( after the first post-separation job, most veterans stay longer than the median tenure of 2.5 years.

Examine turnover rates in a specific roles and compare them to turnover rates across specific departments. Check resignations vs. terminations per department, role, or paygrade. Add new data every 3-6 months and track results over time to highlight trends.

RecruitMilitary [solutions]( can help organizations increase their reach to military job seekers. Why? Because we are veterans, too. We understand the veteran experience, because we’ve lived it ourselves. We know the nuances implicit in a veteran’s background that makes them strong hires who bring great value.