In advance of Veterans Day, Monster and Military.com convened a panel of veteran employment experts to identify the top 10 employers demonstrating extraordinary success in veteran hiring and retention. Additionally, Monster conducted its exclusive 2018 Veteran Hiring** survey to help all employers better understand what they can do to attract this important source of diversity talent.
"Veterans are a highly skilled talent pool," said Bob Melk, Chief Commercial Officer at Monster, which together with Military.com is the premier recruiting solution provider for veterans and employers in the United States. "There is no question about the value those who have served can bring to our civilian workforce and economy. All of the companies highlighted on this year's list recognize that value, and are leading the way with programs and innovative initiatives. Along with the results from our survey, we hope this information will inspire and motivate other employers to strengthen their ranks with veteran talent."
UNVEILING MONSTER'S 2018 BEST COMPANIES FOR VETERANS LIST
The fourth annual Monster Best Companies for Veterans list celebrates companies that offer stellar veteran hiring, onboarding, and retention programs. They include:
The list—which crosses IT, defense, government, transportation, and consulting—is based on nominations by veteran hiring experts and self-reported data from the nominees on hiring and onboarding practices, with a focus on percentage of 2018 hires that were veterans and total percentage of the workforce composed of veterans. For each of the winners, at least 18 percent of hires in 2018 have been veterans (up 20 percent over last year) and 17 percent or more of their workforce are veterans (up from 15 percent).
"The companies on this year's list are exemplary employers when it comes to their veteran hiring," said Steve Jordon, retired U. S. Navy Captain and Executive Director of Veterans Employment Initiative for the Northern Virginia Technology Council (NVTC), and a member of the panel of judges. "They put in place specific strategic plans and policies to ensure their veteran recruitment, onboarding, and retention programs were scalable and effective. Plus, they have shown their ability to understand where the gaps are in the hiring and retention process and innovate to close those gaps."
Many who made the list are repeat winners, an important demonstration of ongoing commitment. Two of the companies—CACI International and PRISM, Inc.—appear for the first time.
"When companies engage with and hire transitioning service members and veterans, they gain more than just a dedicated employee for their business," adds Evan Guzman, founder of The MiLBRAND Project, an agency dedicated to helping businesses and employers attract and retain veterans and military spouses, who was also on the selection committee and has spent his career advocating for veteran hiring. "The vast majority of Americans hold our military in high regard and when businesses showcase their commitment to veteran hiring and retention, it's great for their business on so many levels. The companies on this list understand how important it is for businesses to let veterans know they are eager to hire them and communicating the ability to understand their skill set is crucial to attracting this talent pool."
More details on the winners and the full methodology can be found here.
UNDERSTANDING HOW EMPLOYERS CAN BETTER SERVE VETERAN NEEDS
To complement the 2018 Best Companies for Veterans list, Monster surveyed more than 300 veterans for its exclusive 2018 Veteran Hiring survey. The results underscore the need for robust veteran recruitment programs, highlight the communication gaps that continue to exist between employers and veteran job seekers, and provide guidance for companies looking to improve veteran representation as part of their diversity and inclusion initiatives.
According to the survey data, the majority of veterans look for a job after leaving the military (94 percent) and most veterans (66 percent) said they prepared for a job before leaving active duty, but 63 percent spent just three months or less preparing to find their next job.
Veterans are most interested in pursuing jobs in information technology/information services (17 percent), defense technologies (16 percent) and government (15 percent). Together, these three industries comprise nearly half of all veteran job searches after leaving active duty (48 percent), which presents an opportunity for businesses in those sectors to demonstrate their veteran-friendly recruitment programs.
When it comes to translating military skills and communicating those skills to employers, more than two thirds of respondents (67 percent) said they did not feel like they found work at a comparable level to their military service, and more than half (55 percent) felt recruiters and HR professionals didn't understand their military skills. One in three veteran respondents (33 percent) still feels underemployed today.
"These survey results tell us that while employers want to hire veterans and veterans want to find work, the employers are not fully aware of the skills the veteran is bringing with them from the military," said Jordon, who leads the U.S. TechVets.org program, a collaborative effort between NVTC, the Consumer Technology Association (CTA), Monster and Military.com, focused on accelerating veteran and military spouse employment. "This is a classic case of 'lost in translation' and both sides need better tools to understand each other. The data also tells us we have an opportunity to find new ways to equip military personnel for their job search before they leave the service."
Interestingly enough, while most veterans (66 percent) said they prepared for a job before leaving active duty, 63 percent spent just three months or less preparing to find their next job. This data illustrates there is an opportunity to find new ways to reach, train and equip military personnel for their civilian job search before they leave the service.
Veterans also revealed, possibly because of the limited time spent preparing for their career transition, the factors that they consider when looking at potential employers. Among their top considerations are companies that accept military training in place of civilian credentials (79 percent); have a proven track record of hiring veterans (74 percent); have recruiters who are veterans themselves (64 percent); offer special veteran onboarding programs (60 percent); and, provide a support group for veteran employees (60 percent). This information can be a useful starting point for employers that are trying to build a veteran recruitment program.
"Monster is committed to helping facilitate the connection between employers and veterans, particularly the more than 200,000 service members who transition every year," said Melk. "Besides this list and survey, we offer veterans the camaraderie of the Military.com community; our Transition Center, which offers a custom checklist up to 18 months before service members leave the military; and our award winning Skills Translator to match their military skills and experience and career interests to jobs with military friendly employers. And for our employers, we offer our veteran resume database, Military.com job advertising, employer branding that helps make the connection of veteran initiatives, as well as personal, hands-on advice."
To learn more about how Monster and Military.com's solutions can support a career transition or achieve veteran hiring goals, reach out to a solutions consultant by calling 1-800-MONSTER. To find your next job, visit the Monster website, Military.com, or download the Monster app (iOS, Google Play).
** Monster commissioned a nationwide online survey of 305 veterans who have been out of active duty for less than 10 years. The survey was fielded by Ipsos between September 5-10, 2018 and has an overall margin of error of +/- 5.7% at a 95% confidence level.