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2019 & Vet Unemployment: Applaud, But Keep Advancing
A 2018 U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) report indicates veteran unemployment hit an all-time low of 3.5%. It’s a result of the commitment of our nation to our veterans, and the acknowledgement of the tremendous leadership and skill sets they provide.
This number should be celebrated, but our mission isn’t complete. Sustainment should now be the focus with our sights set on meaningful career pathways for veterans and their families.
We also need a more meaningful way to measure veteran unemployment to provide a better picture of veterans who may need help transitioning from military to civilian life, or feel unfilled in their current role.
Businesses have the power to change this. As a starting point, organizations can:
• Consider joining the U.S. Chamber Hiring Our Heroes team, hiringourheroes.org, and its nationwide effort to connect veterans, service members and military spouses with meaningful employment opportunities.
• Join the Veterans Jobs Mission, veteranjobsmission.com, and get to know its employer resources to develop employment start-up guides and mentorship frameworks, all necessary to leverage veteran talent.
• Join organizations like Hire Heroes USA, hireheroesusa.org, which work to transform military service into civilian successes via personalized career preparation alongside resources for interested employers.
Corporations also need to have a mature veteran hiring process, which includes onboarding and retention. To help mitigate misunderstandings and biases that may occur in the workforce, companies can do a better job of leveraging veteran talent via employee resource groups (ERGs).
Businesses should also consider implementing mentorship programs that help veterans understand the importance of establishing their value and “professional brand” while also supporting and maintaining their team focus.
– Colonel Matthew F. Amidon, USMCR
Source: George W. Bush Institute blog
About the Author: Colonel Amidon is the director of the military service initiative at the Dallas, TX-based George W. Bush Institute.
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