By Donna Miles, American Forces Press ServiceNovember 11, 2010
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, at http://www.EmployerPartnership.org, 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.