USA — Portal Helps Vets, Reserves, Guardsmen Land Jobs

WASHINGTON — Just in time for Vet­er­ans Day, a new, state-of-the-art Web por­tal is being rolled out tomor­row to help vet­er­ans – as well as reserve-com­po­nent mem­bers, their fam­i­lies and wound­ed war­riors – land jobs with civil­ian employ­ers who val­ue their mil­i­tary expe­ri­ence.

The user-friend­ly tools will enhance the pop­u­lar Employ­er Part­ner­ship of the Armed Forces pro­gram by mak­ing it eas­i­er for both job-hunters and employ­ers seek­ing their skills, Army Lt. Col. Matt Leonard, the program’s pub­lic affairs offi­cer, told Amer­i­can Forces Press Ser­vice.

The new por­tal sim­pli­fies the job appli­ca­tion process by allow­ing users to set up a per­son­al pro­file and main­tain a record of their job search­es and search para­me­ters, Leonard explained. That means users don’t have to start from square one each time they enter the sys­tem, sav­ing them time and incon­ve­nience.

In addi­tion, a resume builder helps users cre­ate a resume and main­tain it in the sys­tem, and they can even set an alert func­tion that noti­fies them when par­tic­u­lar job announce­ments are post­ed.

The new por­tal will be eas­i­er for about 1,200 employ­ers par­tic­i­pat­ing in the part­ner­ship pro­gram, too, Leonard said. They will now be able to enter posi­tion vacan­cies direct­ly into the sys­tem and track appli­ca­tions. In addi­tion, they will be able to tap into resumes already in the sys­tem and reach out direct­ly to can­di­dates who qual­i­fy for their posi­tions.

“This pro­gram, par­tic­u­lar­ly with the new Web por­tal, real­ly gives ser­vice­mem­bers and vet­er­ans an edge, because it helps them con­nect with employ­ers who are look­ing for their skills and attrib­ut­es,” Leonard said. “It gives employ­ers an edge, too, because they are able to nar­row down their search­es and sim­pli­fy the hir­ing process.”

The new por­tal is the lat­est devel­op­ment in the pop­u­lar employ­er part­ner­ship pro­gram the Army Reserve launched in April 2008 to help the Army Reserve and civil­ian employ­ers tap into the same tal­ent pool. The pro­gram has gone mil­i­tary­wide and con­tin­ues to attract employ­er part­ners rang­ing from For­tune 500 com­pa­nies to met­ro­pol­i­tan police depart­ments to “mom-and-pop” busi­ness­es.

“We are see­ing more and more larg­er employ­ers like Gen­er­al Elec­tric, like Wal-Mart, com­ing on board and say­ing, ‘We want to be a part of that,’ ” said Army Reserve Chief Lt. Gen. Jack C. Stultz, who came up with the con­cept and con­tin­ues to over­see the pro­gram.

Stultz, a retired Proc­tor & Gam­ble exec­u­tive, said employ­ers rec­og­nize the pro­gram as a way to tap into a tal­ent pool yet to be ful­ly lever­aged. “Employ­ers of Amer­i­ca see this as a new class of work force,” he said. “That is what we are hear­ing from the employ­ers. They talk about the qual­i­ty, the integri­ty, the ethics.”

Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chair­man of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, praised the virtues of hir­ing vet­er­ans.

“Vet­er­ans bring a matu­ri­ty. They bring lead­er­ship. They bring a life expe­ri­ence,” he said. “They bring a ded­i­ca­tion they may not have had when they were 17, 18 or 19 years old, when they were com­ing out of high school or in the first cou­ple years of col­lege.

“But they clear­ly have it now,” Mullen said. “And they can make a big dif­fer­ence for an awful lot of insti­tu­tions.”

Employ­er part­ners in the pro­gram share his sen­ti­ments.

“Vet­er­ans are well-trained, they are very well-dis­ci­plined, in most cas­es very mature, [and] they come back with a good work eth­ic, so it’s a win-win for every­body,” said Bill War­ren, exec­u­tive direc­tor of the Direct Employ­ers Asso­ci­a­tion.

“Hir­ing a mil­i­tary mem­ber, a reservist [or] Guard mem­ber brings dis­ci­pline, good judg­ment, good com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills, depend­abil­i­ty and just an all-around great can­di­date for any num­ber of jobs,” agreed Michael Hinz, vice pres­i­dent for recruit­ing at Schnei­der Nation­al.

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)

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