The Essentials When Hiring Veterans
By: Recruiting Specialist
At America’s Job Exchange, we often discuss the positive impact of hiring veterans; namely why bringing veterans into the workforce is good for business on multiple levels. From the unique skills veterans bring to the table, including leadership and teamwork, to encouraging diversity, all the way through to meeting OFCCP compliance initiatives, hiring veteran can help build a dynamic team and augment your affirmative action planning. Consider the following:
Recognize the Unique stills that Veterans bring to the Workplace
There are multiple reasons why hiring veterans is a good business. Veterans have key skills and training that adapt well to civilian jobs and can help fill out your recruitment and hiring needs. When hiring veterans, focus on their unique skills and training, some of which include:
- Leadership and team-oriented. Those will military training have been conditioned to take on a leadership role; being responsible for not only their behavior, but the behavior of their peers. Military personnel, at the core of their training, are also team-oriented.
- Security clearances. Because of the very nature of working as a government employee, veterans come with background and security checks in place.
- Knowledge of cutting–edge technologies. Since the military relies on sophisticated technologies, veterans are highly skilled in this area, which can minimize the need for training.
- Ability to work under pressure. Those who have served in the military are used to adapting to ever-changing situations, and are required to work long hours, sometimes under difficult circumstance. These are skills that can easily be translated to a civilian job.
Understand the Laws Governing the Hiring of Veterans
Multiple laws have been enacted which impact affirmative action and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) hiring, specifically when it comes to hiring veterans, including the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA). Enacted in 1974, VEVRAA mandates that those doing business with the government ensure their job openings reach qualified Vietnam era veterans returning home from the war and that there is no discrimination in the hiring process.
Another law governing OFCCP compliance is Executive Order 11246. This landmark legislation requires EEO hiring, which prohibits employers who receive Federal contracts over $10,000 in any given year from discriminating in employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or veteran status. In addition, the Executive Order also requires Federal contractors to take affirmative action to make certain that applicants are employed and treated fairly.
Understand all the Elements Needed to Meet OFCCP Compliance
Job posting requirements are at the core of meeting OFCCP compliance parameters. As a federal contractor, you are required to make job openings available to state agencies and other employment service delivery systems that reachprotected veterans under VEVRAA, and others with minority status, so that they have priority access to job listings. You also need to maintain data on job postings, and submit reports as required.
The U.S. Labor Department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance – or OFCCP, enforces affirmative action and equal opportunity employment for veterans. Under laws like VEVRAA, employers doing business with the Federal government need to take action to recruit, hire and not discriminate against protected veterans. The OFCCP defines protected veterans as disabled veterans, recently separated veterans and Armed Forces Service Medal veterans.
For your compliance strategy to be effective you should develop a robust Affirmative Action plan, communicate it to your employees and ensure that it is implemented by any and all employees involved in hiring and your diversity initiatives. You may want to audit your AA plan on a regular basis to ensure that you are meeting compliance parameters.
Become Familiar with the Programs that Support Veteran Hiring
There several programs employers can take advantage of to support veteran hiring. One such program is the Veterans Opportunity to Work Act of 2011 (VOW). VOW expands education and training assistance for veterans, and also offers multiple incentives for employers recruiting from the veteran community. This includes tax credit opportunities to incentivize employers to look at the veteran community as part of their diversity initiatives.
Recognize that Hiring Veterans is Good for Business
Having employees of many different backgrounds, with many different skill sets, can actually be advantageous for a company. And for growth industries that are seeing more competition, such as healthcare, recruiting should be about driving top candidates regardless of their background or gender. For more reasons to consider hiring candidates in the veteran community, visit here.