Happy Veteran's Day! 500,000 unemployed veterans. Let us take a minute to think about the sheer magnitude of 500,000. As per the White House, each year the military separates between 240,000 and 360,000 service members. Here is the core problem. The great majority of these separated veterans are in no way ready to enter the civilian workforce, much less earn a high income to support their families.
Enter CivCom, a veteran-run nonprofit with the unapologetically audacious goal of eliminating all new cases of veterans' unemployment by 2021 founded by veteran Yulee Newsome. How? By getting every military family a job before they leave the military. There are many potential causes of veteran unemployment, some of which are poor health, employer discrimination, skills mismatch, or a very drawn out long job-search. Did you know that unemployment and underemployment of military spouses not only affects individual families, but also costs the U.S. economy $710M to $1B a year? Veterans' unemployment is a problem that affects families and the American economy that we must solve together.
I am especially aware that most veteran spouses are women who suffer the long-term consequences of their husbands' extended unemployment, leading to their husbands' identity crises and at some point, their own, because of the family's inability to be engaged in meaningful and high-paying work. Unemployment hits a family very hard, because at the core, a career is the foundation of our purpose in this world, especially since we spend so much time engaged in our work. New separation from the military with zero employment can be a severe blow to our sense of self-esteem and self-worth.
CivCom helps veterans earn gainful high-paying employment, is free to use, and saves time as well as money for companies by being tax deductible. Via mentoring, training, networking, and job search help, CivCom strategically identifies what each military candidate considers fulfilling work and turns them into an "offer-ready" candidate for that type of work. By partnering successfully transitioned veterans with military families, CivCom has enjoyed great success in matching veterans with employment.
The most obvious struggle is that veterans are completely unprepared for a company's recruiting process, which is why providing hiring organizations "offer-ready" candidates optimizes the veteran recruiting operations by turning their funnel into a pipe. In this way, organizations spend much less time and fewer resources on veteran candidates who are disinterested in and or unqualified for the organizations' job opportunities. CivCom's service is free for military families, now and always, and offers companies great PR opportunities and talent. Brandon Trama served in the Army Special Forces from 2006-2015 and is a current MBA student at Wharton. He remembers that the transition services available were heavily focused on helping service members pursue an undergraduate degree or federal employment. "At the time resources available from the Army weren't helpful for my transition. I wanted to pursue a career in energy-focused finance, but I didn't know how to get started." "Yulee's personal transition from the Navy into his career reflected the kind of transition I wanted to make. Working with him enabled me to get a sense of the different roles in the finance and energy sectors. With CivCom's help and contacts, I was able to secure a pre-MBA internship at a credit fund, and another at an investment bank this summer. Today my goal is the same as it was when I exited the military. I am on a clear path to help me achieve a career in finance with a focus on the energy sector. I would have not been able to get down this path as quickly without CivCom's advice and support." To help military families get ready, CivCom launched a free service on September 12, 2016 at www.civcomready.org that enabled military families to start civilian career research on their own time.
Share the CivCom story with your friends and families, and let us together help more veterans find meaningful employment opportunities for a brighter and more hopeful tomorrow, my Americans!