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Veteran Hiring

Despite several military bases around the area, St. Louis ranks 56th by Wallethub for the best places to live as a veteran.
Veterans are a diverse, skilled talent pool, and many companies can do more to attract, hire and retain them. Josh Perschbacher, Director of Veteran Services at University of Missouri-St. Louis, shared his insight and tips on making your employer one of choice for veterans at the November dinner meeting. He shared several dos and don'ts:

Don't 
  • Treat them as a new grad – Veterans have at least four years of work experience with many have decades more. They may need to learn your business, but they have many transferable skills
  • Treat all veterans the same – Veterans have had a wide variety of experiences while serving. Only a small percentage of veterans are combat-focused, most veterans were in wide variety level of support roles.
  • Assume they want to keep doing what they did in the military – Many times, veterans are looking to leverage their skills in new ways. Focus on their competencies, technical and managerial, when considering them for roles
  • Talk down to their experience – They are used a wide latitude of responsibilities and self-authority.  

Do
  • Communicate – Talk with veteran candidates to learn what they are interested in doing and what might be their transferable skills. For some, it has been 4-, 8-, 12-, or 20- years since they applied for the job.
  • Connect the Company Purpose – Veterans joined the military to make a difference. They are looking to extend their desire for purpose in their private careers. Help them see the larger purpose of their role.
  • Develop Them – While in the military, veterans had a clear promotion track. They knew what they had to do to be eligible for the promotion. They are looking for the same level of transparency and candor with their professional performance.
  • Understand military total rewards lingo – Help veteran candidates to understand your total rewards package by using terms they know.