Hiring veterans: How your company can benefit
- Many veterans appreciate the opportunity to work outside of the 9:00 – 5:00 typical workday. If yours is a company that can offer employment opportunities outside of standard full time employment, you might meet the needs of the veteran who is still reintegrating back into their life after deployment. Sometimes they just need part time, evening or contract work. At JL Transport, a company run by an Air Force veteran, a job might require that a lost bag from the airlines be delivered to someone at 3:00 in the morning!
Incentives for hiring
Branches of the government are continually setting up programs that offer financial incentives to hiring employers along with money the employee can “bring with them” especially for a wounded or disabled veteran. Veteran employees may qualify for job training grants and special employer incentives under these programs. To find incentives for your business, do a specific search at NationalResourceDirectory.gov or VA.gov.
When you employ a Guard/Reserve workforce, it puts you in a unique position. You are eligible to sign a Statement of Support that sends a message to your employees that they don’t need to be concerned about their civilian job while serving. You may be nominated for award programs given by the ESGE (Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve) designed to recognize employers for their military employee practices. They range from the “Patriot Award” Certificate of Appreciation to the prestigious Freedom Awards given by the Secretary of Defense for up to five of the nation’s most supportive employers during ceremonies held at the Pentagon. The media exposure and company recognition for these awards can work for your bottom line. You can market your company as one who has received this award and/or signed a Statement of Support
If you are a civilian employer with a large Guard/Reserve employee component, up to 20% of them could possibly be called out at any one time. That puts a huge burden on a company with a limited workforce. It takes strong company commitment and organization to be able to cover the projects and work that needs to be completed, while holding on to the deployed individual’s job until they return. That can be a lot to juggle! But the sacrifice just might be worth making.
Most employers who make a commitment to hire veterans and those in the Guard and Reserve are creative in the ways they extend support. These employers will offer pay supplements that meet the difference between military and civilian pay, set up programs in house that send care packages to their deployed workers and organize collections for phone cards or gifts for families to recognize special events the serviceperson will be missing.