Service in today’s volunteer military is a privilege and a responsibility, and after two decades of having the brunt of the conflict on their shoulders, it is no surprise that military veterans are one of the most respected groups in the United States. While people value military personnel highly, that appreciation does not necessarily help service members transition into civilian life. It is a sad fact that military veterans often face higher unemployment rates and greater difficulty finding work than their civilian counterparts who have not served. This situation can be especially excruciating for veterans with family or service injuries, who often find it difficult to care for the people they care about after sacrificing so much for their country.
That does not have to be that way. Veterans have the opportunity to transfer their skills and experience in uniform to a rewarding post-military career. There are numerous private and public sector institutions, as well as nonprofits, dedicated to either hiring veterans or finding jobs. In many cases, veterans can even find jobs with the schedules that allow them to take care of their loved ones and still make all of their medical appointments. Here are some great tips on how to find a flexible job for a veteran with a family.
Apply with an effective resume
If you are a veteran, chances are you have received unique training to develop highly specialized skills and years of experience implementing those skills in uniform. However, when returning to civilian life, describing these skills to potential employers or finding ways to monetize them in your post-military career can often be difficult. If you’re struggling to find ways to highlight your military skills and experience in a way that recruiters can understand, find someone who can develop an effective resume for you. Many organizations specialize in turning veterans’ military experience into an asset that companies are looking for. The same resume companies can often help you improve your LinkedIn profile as well. Veterans with solid resources to describe the value they can bring to organizations will be in a much better position when they rejoin the highly competitive civil workforce.
Use your advantages
If you are a veteran with a family, another way to find a good job is to take advantage of the benefits you are entitled to after you’ve served honorably. While people often focus on the medical benefits available to many veterans, especially wounded combat veterans or military retirees, there are many other government benefits that veterans can use to dramatically improve their career prospects. The GI bill is a great example of the benefits veterans can get to work quickly in a lucrative career field. The GI Act, which was expanded in the years after September 11th, does much more than just pay for college attendance. Veterans can also use their GI Bill benefits to pay for critical licenses and reviews required for highly technical careers. Veterans can also use this benefit to offset the cost of attending apprenticeship programs. So, if you are interested in accelerating your entry into a civilian career, find out how to maximize your GI Bill benefits.
Serve in a different way
One of the best ways for veterans to find a flexible job that matches their values is to continue their public service in other ways. After you’ve hung your uniform, you have hundreds of ways to put on a suit, pawn jumpsuit, or even some other uniform and get back to serving the public in a different professional field. For example, there are programs that help veterans transfer their experiences to become teachers. The Department of Agriculture and other agencies have programs to help veterans transition from the military to their own farms to help keep food supply chains safe. Finally, many state and local governments have preferences for hiring veterans for critical public service roles such as police and fire services. If you want to continue serving the public in a federal or local level in a new career field, it is usually a net positive result when you apply for these types of jobs.
Don’t go alone
If you’re struggling to get a job as a veteran, you don’t have to fight alone. Many private and nonprofit organizations can help you find a job and help you find the type of job with a flexible schedule that you need right now. Legacy veterans like the American Legion and Veterans from Foreign Wars (VFW) help veterans find work. Newer nonprofits like Veterans of America in Iraq and Afghanistan (IAVA) also offer assistance programs to help veterinarians reap their GI Bill benefits or succeed in civil life. Finally, the Department of Veterans Affairs has numerous education and labor support programs that can help veterans transition into the civilian world. So reach out to some of these organizations and see if you can get the help you need for a great act two in your civilian career.
Find a rewarding civilian career with a flexible schedule today
For veterans, transitioning successfully into civilian life can be a challenge. However, with a little support from the government and veterinary service organizations, you can hang up your uniform and seamlessly embark on a great civilian career. If you are still serving, plan what will happen after you are released. The sooner you start planning your post-military career, the better. If you’re a veteran with a family back in the civilian world, check out some of the organizations discussed here and make a plan for how to use your military skills and experience as you progress your search for one Country continue great work in civilians.