Recruiting and Retention
Hiring Veterans: What You Need To Know
With the Veteran’s Hospital located in Waite Park, the Greater St. Cloud Area has a large population of military veterans. Some area employers look at this population and wonder about the possible implications of hiring former and active military members, oftentimes carrying with them misconceptions about what it means to be a veteran.
This section will begin by addressing several of the many benefits veterans bring to the workplace, before moving on to disprove some of the most common myths regarding veterans in the workplace.
5 main reasons for organizations to hire veterans
LEADERSHIP AND “FOLLOWERSHIP” CAPABILITIES
From the time they enter service, veterans have been groomed to both become good followers and be ready to take on leadership responsibilities.
Military veterans are the ultimate team players, as this is something ingrained in them from the first moment they enter service. They are accustomed to thinking in terms of what is best for their team and what they can do to strengthen and improve the teams they are part of.
ABILITY TO PERFORM UNDER PRESSURE
Military personnel are trained and expected to be able to perform under pressure, deadlines, and trying conditions, all while judging priorities and accomplishing goals.
EXPERIENCE WORKING WITHIN A DIVERSE GROUP
Veterans have served alongside people of various backgrounds, races, and ethnic origins. In order to accomplish their goals and missions, they have learned to trust and rely upon one another regardless of their backgrounds.
GOAL FOCUS AND ORIENTATION
Veterans are accustomed to making timely assessments of situations and coming up with plans of action. After actions are taken, they typically debrief, look at what worked and what didn’t, and come up with ways to improve in the future.
The Competitive Advantage of Veterans
Each year, there is a large amount of military veterans re-entering the civilian workforce. It is important to keep in mind that veterans represent a diverse group of talent; the main takeaway for companies is that veterans are extremely apt when it comes to learning new skills, especially in stressful situations. This learning curve benefits veterans, as well as companies, in the fast-paced and constantly changing business environment. Although there are many benefits to hiring veterans, there are five main advantages to hiring veterans:
1. Veterans Possess Leadership Skills
American corporations are constantly building and developing leaders from within their own company. Veterans’ time in the military has equipped them with great leadership skills, since many veterans were thrust into leadership positions at a very young age. Additionally, veterans possess a big picture understanding and have impeccable attention to detail. Moreover, veterans are able to stay composed – and creative – while under pressure.
2. Veterans are Extremely Adaptable to Changing Situations
Embracing change is necessary in the fast and ever-changing business world. Veterans have experienced rapid change firsthand; there were numerous new forces and changing environments that veterans had to face on a daily basis.
3. Veterans Have, or Can Attain, Great Educational Skills
The government provides financial assistance to veterans pursuing higher education. By hiring a veteran, companies ensure that they have an employee who is willing to improve their work and add to their skillset through continuing education initiatives.
4. Hiring Veterans Creates Tax Benefits For Employers
Employers can receive around $4,000 as a credit from the federal government for hiring a veteran. Benefits vary, depending on the length of time a veteran has been with an employer. For more details, click here.
5. Veterans Provide Low Workplace Turnover Rates
Veterans possess a team player mentality. Companies that have a strong employee onboarding and assimilation program tend to have the greatest success with the veteran workforce and see a lower turnover rate compared to the overall employee rank and file.
Common Misconceptions Regarding Veterans:
Myth: Vets Have Been Trained to be Mindless Drones
Unfortunately, some employers believe that the military has broken down soldiers and that training and discipline given in the military lead men and women to be unable to think for themselves.
In reality, the training one learns in the military is set to get soldiers thinking about the mission or the group as a whole, and that is what makes the military work so well – many people working toward one common goal.
Soldiers are taught teamwork; taught to get the job done. This requires thinking on their feet and sometimes coming up with a creative solution on the fly. Not to say every soldier is good at quick problem-solving, but to think of soldiers as mindless order-following drones is most definitely not correct.