Human Capital Management Blog

Strategies for HCM Professionals

4 strategies for improving your recruiting of military veterans

veteransEvery organization that cares about finding and developing top-level talent knows to put a great deal of emphasis on recruiting. To have the best staff, you need to find the best staff members, and that means searching everywhere. Savvy companies are looking for young people at colleges and universities, plus experienced workers who are already employed in their respective fields. They’re looking internationally and at home.

There is, however, one direction they’re not looking often enough. While CareerBuilder’s latest survey revealed that 38% of employers are actively recruiting veterans (up from 33% in 2014), there is still more to be done.

Carl Kutsmode, a partner at management consulting firm talentRISE, explains that veteran recruiting has been a widespread weakness since 2001.  He noted that traditional resume-searching algorithms and job-matching services have a blind spot when it comes to vets, and because of this and other factors, there are countless qualified people out of work.

If your organization is looking to do better in this area, the first thing you have to do is lose the corporate jargon and the ulterior motives. Just meet veterans on a human level – they’re people looking for work, just like anyone else, and they’re looking for an honest employer that can give it to them.

“Be authentic,” Kutsmode advised. “Organizations considering a formal military hiring program should do it for the right reasons, not to fill quotas or for PR value.”

Now’s the perfect time to step up your game when it comes to recruiting vets. Today is an important day, as it’s both Veteran’s Day and Remembrance Day in Canada as well, so here are four strategies for doing better with vet recruiting right away.

Secure commitment from the top
Like with anything else, veteran recruiting will go most smoothly if you have support from the executives at the top of your organization. If your CEO, CFO and chief human resources officer are all on board with a new recruiting strategy, you’ll be in prime position to succeed.

Get hiring managers involved
If you really want to see results, it’s important also to educate your hiring managers on the importance of recruiting veterans. It can be a win-win situation, giving work to people who need it and also adding talented people to your staff.

Dedicate some serious resources
Establish a task force for finding veteran recruits. Develop marketing content to attract them. Bring specialists on board to recruit, interview and onboard them. The more resources you put in place, the better off you’ll be.

Tailor job descriptions to the veteran audience
If you’re not having any luck attracting veterans in the first place, it might be worthwhile to rewrite your job descriptions. Nothing major – just a couple of small tweaks might be enough to reposition your open jobs as a good fit for today’s veteran talent.

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