What to Look for in a Military Candidate Resume
Resumes come in all shapes, sizes and formats, and they can be extremely difficult for many people to write, especially our returning military veterans. This is a key issue for many, because of the nature of the job search today.
Today, veterans are returning to a grateful nation, but also to an economy that has been challenged by stagnant job growth. Competition for any available job is fierce.
This is a hard set of circumstances for any job seeker, but it is made a thousand times worse for returning veterans. Many, after their discharge, simply do not know how to begin looking for a job in a planned, productive way. They have received little job search training, and most do not know how to write a resume, one that adequately translates military jargon to “civilian speak,or how to handle themselves in an interview.
For most veterans the key stumbling block is the resume. Many were recruited right out of high school and have simply never had the need to write a clear and compelling resume. Because it is not up to par, they do not even make it through to an interview. Therefore, in order to benefit from these high-caliber job seekers, employers should look for certain components within the veterans’ resume.
1. Key “soft skills”. Veterans are different kinds of candidates—invaluable candidates—with battle-tested leadership skills, a strong work ethic, and the ability to learn new skills quickly. These skills will serve you well, but are hard to quantify and define on a resume. Look for proof of their existence throughout the document.
2. Achievements. Everyone has achievements, regardless of their background. Everyone is proud of what they have done. Achievements should be listed on the resume, and will help you understand the vet’s character, work ethic and values.
3. Proof of training. If the veteran has trained others, that indicates an ability to communicate effectively, learn difficult/complicated material and engage others in the process.
4. Applicable skills. A veteran’s resume is never going to a mirror your job requisition. The working environment within the military is simply too different. However, approximately 80% of the jobs in the military are non-combat oriented. This means that veterans are learning applicable skills in addition to their strong work ethic, dedication and leadership skills. Read through the job duties listed in the resume and look for evidence of any applicable skills—management of resources, supervisory experience or network / programming knowledge.
Veterans will not enter your hiring process empty-handed. They bring stupendous leadership and management skills to the table—skills that are the hardest to grow. If you are interested in leveraging this powerful arm of the American workforce, the hiring experts at PACE Staffing Network can help. If you are looking for job recruiters for veterans in Seattle, contact our Hiring Heroes placement consultants today.