Military Hiring Programs: Rebuilding Corporate Benches

If anyone is qualified to give military-experienced job seekers insight into the post-military job market and Corporate America’s opinion of them, it’s Eric Salzman, one of Bradley-Morris’ most experienced Executive Consultants. Salzman has worked for Bradley-Morris, the nation’s largest placement firm focused solely on military-experienced talent, for the past eight years. He has worked with over 120 companies to establish or compliment their military hiring programs and placed over 300 military-experienced candidates into a wide range of industries spanning the largest power and manufacturing companies to a small, three-person consulting firm (for whom he doubled the staff out of one hiring event).

Salzman enjoys getting companies to see the value of military experience. He is a master of showing his clients how military experience fits into their organizations through comparable success stories. But perhaps the most rewarding aspect of the job is the service he is able to provide to veterans. “I really enjoy seeing candidates I’ve placed come back and use me when they have hiring needs again,” said Salzman.

This is the first interview in a series Salzman has graciously agreed to on behalf of MtC readers:

Everyone knows the economy has seen better days, yet Bradley-Morris continues to place military-experienced job seekers into civilian jobs. What motivates a company to turn to a military placement firm for talent in spite of a saturated job market?

Most of my clients turn to me for two main reasons: First is the speed and efficiency of our military hiring events. These events allow them to see 8 to 10 pre-screened candidates (all qualified and interested in the job, location and salary) in a one-day format. Second, companies are targeting candidates that are easily promotable. This adds bench-strength to an organization. The intangibles military-experienced candidates bring to the table (such as work ethic, discipline, problem-solving and decision-making under pressure) are seen as true assets.

Are there common misconceptions about military-experienced job seekers in Corporate America?

Corporate America harbors several misconceptions about the military. The main one I see pertains to a military-experienced job seeker’s ability to conform to a “corporate culture”, where the rules and duties are not always as clear as they are in the military.

As a seasoned executive consultant, how do you overcome those misconceptions to best position your military-experienced candidates for consideration?

I identify misconceptions and tackle them head-on with examples of successful candidates I placed into very satisfied companies. Because Bradley-Morris specializes in recruiting military-experienced talent, I am able to clearly explain a candidate’s skill set, how it relates to the job, and how the military has prepared them to exceed goals and expectations.

How should a veteran market their military experience, especially when it does not correlate directly with industry or vacancy requirements?

Veterans need to be able to draw parallels between what they did in the military and the job for which they are applying. If it is a leadership role, they must be able to break down military experience in a way that demonstrates their unique style of leadership, how they deal with conflict, and how they motivate and reward their troops. If the target is a project management job, they need to talk about managing time, resources, people, deadlines, and paperwork.

How has the playing field changed in the past two years, and what can we expect next year?

Companies are really looking for candidates with great energy and attitudes. This seems to be the case more now than ever. Companies are focusing on building teams that work well together and not just focusing on finding the candidate with the most qualifications. I’ve seen an overwhelming number of candidates selected for jobs because of their positive attitude.

For more information on Bradley-Morris, a free service for military-experienced job seekers, please visit Eric Salzman can be reached at or