FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- Finding new employment can be a stressfully daunting task, but an upcoming event will provide a centralized location to make it easier for job seekers to find that perfect employment opportunity.

The 14th annual Fort Rucker Area Job Fair is coming to Enterprise High School July 27 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and is free and open to the public, and with over 129 companies registered so far looking to fill more than 5,000 job vacancies, this is one event any job seeker won't want to miss, said Brian Tharpe, Fort Rucker Soldier for Life Transition Assistance Program Center transition services manager.

"This is going to be a mega job fair this year," he said. "People should get their résumés out and get them polished up, and if they don't have one, they should definitely get one in order."

Job seekers should prepare a general résumé listing all of their areas of expertise and experience, said Tharpe, unless they know the company or positions they wish to apply for, then they should tailor their résumé for that specific company or job.

"If they do know what company they want to work for, they need to do their research ahead of time on the particular companies," said the transition services manager. "Also, this will be a hiring event, so people should dress as if they're going for a job interview."

Soldiers should wear their duty uniforms in order to help potential employers identify them as Soldiers, and veterans will be provided a flag to put on their lapel stickers to identify them as former service members.

"A lot of the employers want to talk with Soldiers. [By wearing their uniforms] they'll stand out," said Tharpe. "Everyone should dress the part. If they don't wear their uniform, people should dress as if they are going for a job interview, because an interview process could take place during the event."

"Sometimes it can be difficult for veterans to transition to the civilian workforce since we're so specialized in what our jobs were in the military, but this gives us the opportunity to talk with employers and explain to them what we have to offer them," said Damien Smith, military veteran, during last year's job fair. "It's a great way to get them to remember you and see you as more than just a name on a stack of papers."

If people need help preparing for the job fair, Army Community Service provides an employment readiness program workshop that provides jobseekers with the essentials when looking for new employment, such as writing a résumé, prepping for job interview and other helpful tips, said Mike Kozlowski, ACS personal financial readiness specialist.

"While I don't hover on the specifics of job fairs per se, I do make an effort to go into the meat of the private-sector résumé and interviewing strategies," Kozlowski said. "I also share other helpful tips attendees can use to make their job hunts less stressful and more productive.

The program is available on a biweekly basis with the next session July 20 from 9-11:30 a.m. in Bldg. 5700 in the ACS multipurpose room.

A full list of jobs is available at https://labor.alabama.gov/jobfair. Job seekers can register for the job fair or search the jobs that will be available at the event by selecting the Fort Rucker Area Job Fair from the drop down menu. The information provided will show the companies hiring, as well as the position and how many positions are open for that job.

For more information on the workshop, call 255-2594.

For more information on the job fair, call 347-0044, email enterprise@alcc.alabama.gov, or visit https://labor.alabama.gov/jobfair.