The Fort McCoy Recruiting Company has a big mission — help find the future Soldiers of the U.S. Army and the U.S. Army Reserve.
In an ever-competitive market for recruits in the 21st century, Capt. Tyler Olson, company commander, said his company of 23 Soldiers works hard throughout its five stations in central and western/southwestern Wisconsin to support Army recruiting goals.
“Looking at high schools would be our number one focus,” Olson said. “Getting those multiple touchpoints with juniors and getting their interest built up as they're … starting to think about what they want to do their senior year, where they want to go to school, what we can fit their plans with, and then those high school seniors who might be telling themselves that it’s now crunch time, and they want to figure out what they want to do. Then also there’s college students to engage with … the Army offers some significant things for college students, too.”
The Fort McCoy Recruiting Company is part of the Milwaukee Recruiting Battalion. According to the battalion’s description, “the Milwaukee Battalion is headquarters to four Wisconsin-based recruiting companies located in Milwaukee, Madison, Appleton, and Fort McCoy, one Michigan-based recruiting company in Iron Mountain, and one Illinois-based recruiting company located in Loves Park. Altogether, the Milwaukee Recruiting Battalion supports 39 Army recruiting facilities.”
The five stations the Fort McCoy Recruiting Company has in Wisconsin are in Onalaska, Plover, Hudson, Wausau, and Eau Claire. Olson works from McCoy works from Fort McCoy with the company’s first sergeant and the company clerk. All the rest of the company’s Soldiers work and operate from the five stations.
Olson said he, like the rest of the company, spends a lot of time on the road supporting recruiting needs and efforts by the company. And he said today’s recruiting is different from when he was a new Soldier.
“When I came in it was 100 percent about, ‘Hey let’s talk about college,’” Olson said. “There was no talk about pay, benefits, all that stuff. It was about how can the Army get you into college because that's what my goal was. Nowadays it’s about selling a lifestyle. So, when you talk to the youth in school, like the vast majority of them, their career goal would be to be a social media influencer,” Olson said. “So that’s not something that you can just say hey let’s train up in (that), and you walk into a job with human resources after that. How do you sell a lifestyle?”
And in lifestyle, Olson said recruiters often tell potential recruits about some of the unique career fields within the Army, such as airborne, air assault, and special forces.
And social media plays a large role in recruiting as well, Olson said. With Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and more out there, he said it’s important for the new recruits to see what the Army has to offer through those platforms, and elsewhere.
“It's a lot of social media and telephone prospecting now,” Olson said. “Back in the day, it was a lot of face-to-face in the schools and stuff like that. In addition to Facebook, Instagram, and anything along those lines, we’ve got massive amounts of text messages and emails sent out all the time.”
And as part of the Fort McCoy team as a tenant organization at the installation, Olson said he appreciates support from the garrison. “For garrison support, it’s probably the best installation I’ve ever worked out of,” Olson said.
And new things are happening in Army Recruiting. The U.S. Army is offering promotion incentives to Soldiers who refer individuals to their local recruiting station with the Soldier Referral Program (SRP), according to U.S. Army Recruiting Command. The SRP encourages all Soldiers to support recruiting and gives them an opportunity to share their stories and decision to serve with their community. Find out more at https://recruiting.army.mil.
(Editor’s note: Stay tuned for regular updates in The Real McCoy from the Fort McCoy Recruiting Company.)
Anyone interested in joining the Army should call 1-800-USA-ARMY, ext. 181, or visit www.goarmy.com. Anyone interested in joining the Army Reserve, call 1-800-USA-ARMY,
ext. 182 or visit www.goarmyreserve.com.
To learn more about the Fort McCoy Recruiting Company, visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ArmyRecruitingCoFortMcCoy.
Fort McCoy’s motto is to be the “Total Force Training Center.”
Located in the heart of the upper Midwest, Fort McCoy is the only U.S. Army installation in Wisconsin.
The installation has provided support and facilities for the field and classroom training of more than 100,000 military personnel from all services nearly every year since 1984.
Learn more about Fort McCoy online at https://home.army.mil/mccoy, on the Defense Visual Information Distribution System at https://www.dvidshub.net/fmpao, on Facebook by searching “ftmccoy,” and on Twitter by searching “usagmccoy.”