Survey: One in Five U.S. Employers Seek Veterans for Jobs


Employers want to tap into the technical and communication skills and leadership abilities of returning veterans, according to a survey conducted for CareerBuilder and released on the eve of Veterans Day 2011.

The findings are from a survey conducted in August and September 2011 with 2,874 full-time U.S. hiring managers and HR professionals in the public and private sectors. Twenty percent said they are recruiting U.S. veterans to work for their organizations.

“The unemployment rate for veterans who left military service over the last decade continues to outpace that of the civilian workforce,” said Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America, in a news release.

“After fighting for their country, they come home fighting for jobs,” he continued. “The [CareerBuilder] survey shows that employers recognize the unique value military experience can bring but that they don’t always understand how military skills fit into corporate America. Veterans will need to clearly make that connection in their resume, cover letter and job interviews as they enter this new chapter of their careers.”

The difficulty returning veterans face in the United States’ rocky job market has generated national attention in recent years.

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs proposed a rule requiring federal contractors to establish annual benchmarks for hiring veterans, SHRM Online reported in April 2011.

Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) President and CEO Henry G. “Hank” Jackson was on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., in June 2011 as one of a panel of experts participating in a hearing on “Putting America’s Veterans Back to Work.”

And in August 2011, the Obama administration outlined a plan that would create tax credits for employers that hire veterans, HR News reported.

For veterans with disabilities, a majority of HR professionals surveyed by SHRM in November 2010 were unaware of programs they can tap into for finding veterans who have the job qualifications they seek.

SHRM’s poll findings, released in January 2011, showed that:

  • 60 percent of respondents were unaware of the Tip of the Arrow Foundation, the VetSuccess Program and the Wounded Warrior Program.
  • 68 percent had hired a veteran in the previous 12 months.
  • 67 percent said their organizations included veterans in their diversity plans/policies.
  • 38 percent said their organizations had employee assistance programs with expertise in veterans’ issues.

Employers looking for resources to help them attract and hire veterans can access the Veterans Hiring Toolkit, which is part of the America’s Heroes at Work” initiative launched by the U.S. Department of Justice in October 2010.