Tips for Job-Seeking Veterans
The civilian job market can be very challenging for transitioning and veteran military, and we at RecruitMilitary are here to help. Where do you start? Here are a few suggestions:
Make a plan.
- In what role do you see yourself in your next career?
- For what company or companies do you see yourself working?
- Write a personal mission statement.
- Define your goals realistically.
- Establish a timeline for where you see your career in the next one, five, and ten years.
- After identifying where you want to work, use LinkedIn to establish working relationships with talent acquisition directors and recruiters.
- Ask for help. Recruiters get pitches all the time from hopeful candidates. Asking for their help will increase the likelihood of a response.
Identify the decision-makers.
- Who in your network knows the HR teams, recruiters, and global talent managers? Get an introduction.
- Once you have an introduction, you will need to mold and polish a 15-to-60-second elevator pitch.
Brush up that old resume.
- A Mil-Spec resume with military nomenclature, MOS’s, strategic titles, and training information will not always translate well for recruiters.
- Consider using a trusted, reputable resume-writing service that specializes in translating military resumes to civilian terms.
- Show your value to the potential employer. What would make you a great asset to the team? Tell that to the employer on your resume.
- Add a concise cover letter. Personalize it for the decision-maker in the company.
- Extra points for you for congratulating the company on a recent success or a contract it just won! Preemptive research can help you win the job.
Brand yourself as an expert.
- If you already have civilian work experience, and if you have a flair for writing, write articles about your area of specialization. The articles can be short and simple, like the article you are reading. Where do you send them? Your local newspaper or business magazine, alumni publications, club or lodge bulletins, etc. A lot of small publications are hungry for content.
- If you have little or no civilian work experience, explain how certain of your military experiences apply to current business struggles.
- Start a blog to brand yourself and display your expertise. Best of luck in your job search, and thank you for serving in the armed forces of the United States.
Mike Rollins is vice president of sales at RecruitMilitary and a veteran of the United States Navy. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Mike Rollins