Get Great Job Leads With Our Free Registration and Job Search, Part 1
Chris Cravens is the national director of candidate acquisition and a veteran of the United States Marine Corps. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you have a few minutes right now to sign up for RecruitMilitary’s free job services? When you sign up, you will join a database of more than 835,000 transitioning and veteran job seekers – a treasury of talent that is searched by recruiters representing more than 4,000 employers, franchisors, and educational institutions.
In addition, members of our database can search the 215,000+ postings on our job board – and they can receive:
- job alerts matching their experience
- invitations to nearby DAV/RecruitMilitary All Veterans Job Fairs
- RecruitMilitary’s monthly email jobs newsletter, The VetTen.
To sign up, you will fill out a registration form, and you will have an opportunity to post your resume. On the form, only a few fields are required. Nevertheless, I urge you to fill out the entire form and post your resume. The more information you provide, the less work you make for recruiters who are eager to hire veterans. And many recruiters will not even consider job seekers who do not post resumes.
Recruiters are very busy people. By failing to fill out the entire form and post a resume, you could miss the cut repeatedly because recruiters are too busy to go after necessary information about you.
Another tip: If you are seeking a professional position, you should attach your LinkedIn profile. This step is not only useful, it is also easy due to the fact that the database automatically asks you if you would like to attach your LinkedIn profile, and then makes the connection for you if you answer “yes.” Recruiters like to see as much information as possible – and you will be able to show how much effort you put into the LinkedIn profile.
All that said, you can fill out the entire form, post a resume, attach your LinkedIn profile, and still opt out of receiving job alerts, job fair invitations, and/or The VetTen.
RESEARCH NOW OR LATER
To increase your chances of getting found by a recruiter, I recommend that you base your profile and resume on job research. Get on the Internet and search for the type of job that interests you. Be as specific as you can with your search terms. For example, if you are interested in computer repair, use “computer repair jobs,” not “computer jobs.” Then go through your search results and find a job description that is at least 400 words long.
Read that description word-for-word. As you read, make a list of about 20 words that describe the job qualifications and the employer’s preferences. These will be your keywords. When you create your profile and write your resume, include as many keywords as you honestly can.
In our database, you can edit your profile and replace your resume. So here is a suggestion: First, create a minimal profile and post your existing resume right away, to get them working for you. Then do your research, complete your profile, and replace your resume.
DON’T BE A STRANGER
Do not just set up your account and expect employers to hunt you down. Visit our job board regularly and perform searches. Recent activity, along with a complete profile, will make it more likely that your profile will show up at the top of recruiters’ search results.
In addition, you should keep your profile and resume current. Stale profiles and resumes indicate indifference and inattention to detail. Yes, you may care a great deal about advancing your career, and you may be a detail-oriented individual – but you have to let the recruiters know that.
The required fields on the basic sign-up form are:
- first and last names
- email address
- current military status
- military branch
- pay grade
A word about your email address: If you would like to receive job notifications and other messages containing live web links, please use an email address with a domain name other than .mil. To avoid phishing scams and other threats, the Pentagon has instituted a policy of disabling HTML links in emails that come from outside the .mil domain. So by all means check us out, then invite us in via a non-.mil address.
Now, let us go through some of the non-required fields on the basic form one-by-one, and let me explain why recruiters want the additional information.
STREET ADDRESS, CITY, AND STATE
Some recruiters search our database by ZIP Code. They specify the code and, to capture nearby residents, a number of miles from the zone (zone is the “Z” in “ZIP”).
Filling in city and state opens the way for recruiters who use those terms instead of a ZIP Code.
Filling in your street address helps local recruiters, especially in cities that are spread out geographically – Fort Worth, for example. A recruiter in that city will probably be more likely to pursue candidates who supply their street addresses, rather than simply “Fort Worth.”
Another benefit to disclosing your location is that the database will tell you what job fairs will be in your area soon. Yes, you can look that information up on your own, but it is useful and saves time to have the information readily available.
Many recruiters use the phone, rather than email, to make their first contacts with job seekers. True, you may get a lot of calls that do not pan out. But I advise you to look on fruitless calls as a time-cost of doing the job of getting a job.
Some employers prefer to recruit veterans of a specific branch of the service for certain jobs. For example, many recruiters seek Navy veterans for engineering and technical jobs.
MILITARY PAY GRADE
What you put in this field and the Military Branch field will inform veteran recruiting specialists about your command responsibilities in the service. But what about non-specialist recruiters? They can check a pay grade-and-rank table – E-6 is a staff sergeant in the Army, etc. – to get a general idea of your leadership experience.
If you are transitioning out of the military, your pay grade will also give recruiters an idea of your overall qualifications and career expectations – the level at which you expect to enter the civilian work force, etc.
This field is for men and women who are still in the service. Providing your time until separation will help recruiters who need to fill future job openings. Intervals range from one month to five years.
SECURITY CLEARANCE CHECK BOX
Certain positions in the federal government and certain defense jobs require security clearances. Listing yours may make a difference when a recruiter searches our database.
Further down in the registration process, you will come to the Military Background page shown in this article. This page asks for MOS codes and equivalents. Why make a selection for this field? It is true that many recruiters do not understand MOS’s, and certain MOS’s do not seem to be good qualifications for civilian jobs. But it is also true that many companies have military recruiting specialists – many of them veterans themselves – who understand military terminology thoroughly. These specialists also understand better than many veterans the value of certain military experience. For example, service as a small unit leader in combat translates well into supervision of work crews in the civilian world.
This is another field designed for veteran recruiting specialists, many of whom look for job seekers with specific military schooling. Here is a random selection of listings: Air Conditioning and Refrigeration School, Aircraft Hydraulics School, Enlisted Supply Intermediate Course, Motor Transport Maintenance, Navy Search and Rescue, USAF Records Management Training.
On the next page, you will be able to specify expiration dates for your clearances in the following categories: Secret, TS/SCI, Q-DOE, Top Secret, ISSA, and LDOE.
Next will come the Resume and Summary page shown in this article. The headline field on this page is extremely important. This is the place to grab a recruiter’s attention and tell him or her why you are the perfect candidate for the employer’s hiring needs. If you are looking to change fields, say so. If you want to stay in the field you are already in, mention years of experience in that field.
Keep it short and sweet. Think of this as your “elevator pitch,” a quick introduction to you and your experience that will spark the interest of a recruiter.
This should be a quick and easy read. When listing your skills and experience, use bullet points rather than paragraphs. This is also a great place to use the keywords you found while conducting your research on jobs and industries.
Describe your skills and experience in a way that will be marketable to a new employer. If you sound as if you can do only a few very specific tasks and nothing else, you will not come across as trainable. Let your experience be a platform to show your skills and your flexibility.
The next page, Education, has listing for the name of the school, your academic program, your highest education level, your grade point average, and your start and end dates. There is also a box to check to indicate whether you are still attending.
Education pages are pretty much routine field for job board registrations, so you should fill ours in. You will note that our list of education levels includes “Professional Certificate,” so veterans who have earned civilian certification based on skills gained in the military can put that front and center.
Do not be too concerned if your grade point average is not stellar. Employers are looking more for a record that shows your determination to advance your career via continuing education.
In Part 2 of this article, I will discuss the page on which we ask job seekers about their work backgrounds. We will also take a look at a sample profile, and I will review the list of the resources available on our website to help veterans get great jobs.
But, of course, you do not have to wait for Part 2 to fill out the registration form completely and post your resume. I hope that I have already make the case that it is in your best interest to do so.
Best wishes, and thank you for serving in the armed forces of the United States.
By Chris Cravens