11 Reasons to Hire a Veteran



“Hiring veterans is one of the best investments businesses can make in the future success of their companies and of our state.” – Governor Mark Dayton, July 2, 2015

Who Wants This Job?

“I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.” (Title 10, US Code; Act of 5 May 1960 replacing the wording first adopted in 1789, with amendment effective 5 October 1962).

That’s the Oath of Enlistment for our United States military.

I am thankful every day that women and men choose to take this oath and serve our country.

What Can I Do?

The current unemployment rate for all veterans, as of the end of October 2015, is 3.9 percent. For those who served in the most recent Gulf War, the rate is 4.6 percent. While these rates are marginally better than the overall unemployment rate of 5 percent, they persist.

In honor of Veterans Day, which falls on Nov. 11, here are 11 reasons to consider hiring a veteran for your team:

  1. Servant Leadership. In the Marines, the officers eat last, ensuring their teams have the food they need to continue to do their jobs. No book or training course needed here on servant leadership.
  2. Team.  They train together and cross-train in other areas. They’re always ready to help their team, knowing the team will help them. They understand and value loyalty, trust, and teamwork.
  3. Mission-driven. They are taught to accomplish the mission. Many times, their lives depend on it. No need to print out and laminate your mission statement for them.
  4. Grace under pressure. There is nothing in our work that can compare to the stress of combat or being in a danger zone.
  5. Attention to Detail. From boot camp to their last day in service, details matter. This is a mindset that is hard to develop, and they already have it.
  6. Diversity and Inclusion. Military teams work successfully in a variety of conditions with people from many backgrounds, ethnicities, and political views.
  7. Adapt and Overcome. “I can’t” isn’t usually an acceptable answer in the military. Looking for innovation or continuous improvement? Ask a veteran.
  8. Accountability.  Trained in a command hierarchy, military people quickly learn what needs to be done, by whom, and when it’s due. Then they deliver. That’s project management.
  9. Initiative. In the military, the expectation is immediate contribution. That’s a compelling value proposition.
  10. Transferable skills. Many military jobs have better technical training than what is offered for civilian work. Now you just have to hire for the culture fit: see numbers 1-9.
  11. It’s the right thing to do. The brave women and men who served our country took that oath and protected our way of life. Let’s give back a little and help them with the next step in their careers.


Click here for more information on what we do in Minnesota to connect veterans with employment opportunities. What do you do in your organization?

Joe Raasch is part of the GovLoop Featured Blogger program, where we feature blog posts by government voices from all across the country (and world!). To see more Featured Blogger posts, click here.

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