Many military veterans will attest to the fact that finding work after their time in the service can be a difficult one. Study after study has shown that returning veterans have a higher-than-average unemployment rate despite having gained valuable skills in the service, such as taking charge of troops, operating equipment and weapons systems and working with computers.
"The biggest challenge people have [in finding employment] is translating what they've done in the military into terms that potential employers would understand," said John Meyer, a U.S. Air Force veteran and CEO of crowdsourcing and business services provider Arise Virtual Solutions. "The military and the corporate world each have its own terminology, and rarely do they intersect."
Meyer said that this "language barrier" between veterans and employers is the reason that so many qualified vets get passed over for job opportunities, so learning to draw the parallels between military experiences and job requirements is of utmost importance. Military strengths such as accountability, leadership and management need to be explained in terms of corporate responsibilities. Even training in weapons systems can be positioned as a strong background in technology. [Job Interview Tips for Veterans]
"Veterans need to find ways to spin things," he told Business News Daily. "The military mindset is, work until you get it done. This is a positive thing for the corporate world. They're always looking for ambitious people who want to take on a bigger role."
"Pick up the necessary terminology to translate your training and education into corporate-speak," Meyer said. "Expecting employers to do that work for you puts you at a disadvantage. Show that you're a self-starter and really want to blossom in their environment."
Based on Meyer's insights and data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are eight jobs that allow veterans to leverage their military skills and experiences.
Administrative services manager– Plans, directs and coordinates supportive services for an organization, including record-keeping, mail distribution and facility maintenance.
Construction manager/general contractor– Plans, coordinates, budgets and supervises construction projects from development to completion.
Human resources manager – Oversees recruiting, interviewing and hiring of new staff, consults with executives on strategic planning, and serves as a liaison between a company's management and employees.
Information security analyst – Plans and carries out security measures to protect a company's computer networks and systems from cyberattacks.
Long-haul truck driver –Transports goods from one location to another via tractor-trailers and other commercial vehicles.
Machine operator –Controls machinery, either directly or via computer, to carry out operations in a variety of industries, such as construction, manufacturing and packaging.
Public relations specialist – Creates and maintains a favorable public perception of clients through media releases that increase awareness of their work and goals.
- Software engineer –Develops applications and/or underlying systems for computers, networks and other devices.
Originally published on Business News Daily.