Military Employment Guide: Researching Jobs

Step By Step Guide to Employment: Researching Jobs

As you work towards finding employment, you need to first identify your focus. What do you even want to do and what will that look like? Once you figure out what your focus will be, you can move on to researching jobs that you are interested in.

Within any career field, you will find different opportunities as far as the type of job you can get. You will want to research different jobs to figure out if they might be a good fit. Just hearing that a job is “a good job” isn’t enough to tell you if that type of job is something you would want to work towards.

When it comes to researching a job or a career that you are interested in, you need to look at the skills required, the education that is needed, the experience employers will be looking for as well as the pay. Once you can figure out what each job you are interested in requires, you will be better able to pin down the right job listings to apply for. 

Skills Needed

Each job will ask for certain types of skills. Some of these could be something tangible such as if you know Microsoft Word or if you can type for a certain amount of WPM. Other skills can be more general such as if you have leadership skills or are detail-oriented. 

See if the jobs you are looking at matchup with your skillset. If they do, you know to keep looking into them. If your skills don’t match up at all, the job might not be a good fit. 

Education Needed

The education that is needed for a particular job can be the most important part. You might not have mastered all of the skills on the list, but if you have the right degree, the job can still be a good fit. With some jobs, education could be a requirement of the field, such as needing to have a master’s degree to be a licensed social worker. 

In other jobs, education could be something that a particular company is looking for. You may just need to take a quick class or pass an exam to be qualified to apply for a certain job. 

Experience Needed

Companies and organizations will want to know that you have the experience they think is needed for a job. This could be years working in the field, or years at a particular type of job. If you have experience in a certain field, you might want to start looking in that direction first. That way you will be more likely to fulfill their experience needs.


Pay is very important to each and every job seeker. However, pay isn’t always included in the job listing. What you can do is look at industry standards, and break that down by your location. Websites like, and can give you insights about how much a job would pay you. You can use this as a guide when looking to see what jobs might be a good fit.

When you find out about what the jobs you are researching are looking for in a potential employee, you can take what you have learned and change things if need be. For example, if you are interested in one job but don’t have the education, you can find out what you would need to do to get that education before you would apply. If the job seems like a good fit, this can be a good way to still go after what you want. 


Military Employment Guide: Continued Education & Training

Step by Step Guide to Employment: Continued Education and Training – General Military

Once you have figured out what your career path is, and possible jobs that you may want to apply for, you may need to continue your education and go back to school. You might need a certain degree, such as an associate’s or a bachelor’s degree, or you may just need a few more classes or a certificate of some kind.

As a service member or former service member, you have Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits that you can use for your education. It would be important to know how to register for them, how to transfer them if need be, and what you need to do in order to have them pay for your schooling.

In addition, vocational training and preparing yourself for entrepreneurship can get you on the right path for your new career. Whether you are planning to open your own business right away, or plan to in the future, knowing what to expect is important.

Post 9/11 GI Bill Benefits

With your Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits, you should be able to go to school for no cost. Of course, this does depend on where you are going to go to school, how much has already been used, and what you plan to do.

  • Are you eligible for the Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits? You are if you have served on active duty for at least 90 days, after September 10, 2001.
  • You will then need to apply for benefits. Gather the following documents: your social security number, direct deposit information, education, and military history, and basic information about the school or training facility.
  • You can apply online, by mail, in person, or work with a trained professional. Keep in mind it can take up to 30 days to process your education claim.
  • After you have applied and your claim is accepted you will receive a Certificate of Eligibility, (COE), or award letter in the mail. You will then need to bring this to the VA certifying official at your school.
  • What happens if you get denied and disagree with that decision? You can request a decision review or manage a legacy appeal.

You also have the option of transferring your Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits. Doing so will allow a spouse or a child to use them if you don’t plan to do so in the future. You will need to apply to transfer those benefits, as they don’t just happen automatically.

  • First of all, find out if you can even qualify to transfer your benefits. You need to be active duty, or in the Selected Reserve and have completed at least six years of service on the date your request is approved. You also need to add four more years to your service. The person getting the benefits will need to be enrolled in DEERS.
  • Once the Transfer of Entitlement (TOE) is approved, your dependent can apply for up to 36 months of benefits.
  • Spouses can use these benefits right away. They can be used whether you are on active duty or after you have separated, for up to 15 years after you do so. They can’t however receive MHA if you are still on active duty.
  • Children can also use them whether you are on active duty or after you have separated, however, you will need to have at least 10 years of service before they can do so. They also need a high school diploma or be 18 years of age, and they do qualify for MHA, even if you are active duty. They can’t use the benefits after they turn 26.
  • When you are still on active duty you will need to request, change, or revoke a TOE through milConnect. Once approved you can apply online or by mail.

Prepping for Vocational Training

You might need to look into vocational training to gain the certificates and skills you need to apply for certain jobs, or even to move forward in your current job. Vocational training is training to get the skills you need, usually in highly technical or hands-on fields. Some examples would be plumbing, culinary arts, fashion design, graphic design, automotive repair, medical assistant, dental assistant, and nursing assistant.

You can attend state vocational schools, private schools, and non-profit technical schools to earn a certificate in the subject you want. Community colleges also have many of these options. You need to figure out if you would like to attend online or in person, and where you actually want to go. This might be hugely dependent on where you live and what is available to you.

While it might depend on the subject, most of these courses will take you a couple of months, and some you can earn in a matter of weeks. On the other side, you might also find some programs that are more in-depth and take longer, even up to a couple of years.

  • Decide what skills you want to go to vocational school for
  • Decide where you will go and if you will go in person or online
  • Fill out an application for the school
  • Figure out how you will pay for the vocational training. Will you be using your Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits?  Make sure to follow the directions above to receive those benefits.

Prepping for Entrepreneurship

If you want to go the entrepreneurship route and create and run your own business, you will want to prepare to do so. First of all, what will you be doing? What will your business be? You can offer a service-based business such as coaching, or repair work, or a product-based business, such as selling consumer items, or even items you have created yourself. There are a lot of options when it comes to entrepreneurship.

In order to prepare yourself for this career path, you will need to ask yourself a few questions.

  • What will your business be? How will you set it all up?
  • What skills will you need to pursue this path? Do you need any more education to help you get started?
  • Do you have the right mindset for entrepreneurship? You may need to work on that. Working for yourself can be very different from working for someone else.
  • Commit to it. As an entrepreneur, you will go through ups and downs and things won’t always be easy. Committing to this type of career path is important.
  • Know the law. When it comes to being an entrepreneur, there are certain tax laws, and business laws you need to make sure you are aware of. Get your ducks in a row before you get started, and make sure you have done everything you can to prepare.

Continuing your education and training is a good goal to have, whether you need it for a specific job, or to run your own business. Take the time to figure out what you personally need, and work on getting it done. You will then be in a much better place to succeed, find a new job, and get the most out of your career.



Military Employment Guide: Evaluate & Translate Your Skills

​​Step by Step Guide to Employment: Evaluate Your Skills – Translate Your Story/Skills

As you are working towards finding the right job, one of the steps is being able to translate your story and your skills. Having served in the military, your particular MOS may or may not translate directly to an after-military job. You might also have skills from other past employment that doesn’t have anything to do with the military. 

Translate Military Skills

When looking and applying for jobs you will need to know which of your military skills will translate to a civilian job. You also want to be able to clearly show a future employer what those skills are in languages they can understand. Civilian hiring managers might not totally understand military terms or lingo or even how your experiences will translate to the job you are applying for. 

Employers will be looking for hard or technical and soft skills. What is the difference?

Hard Skills

Hard or technical skills are skills that can be measured. These are a lot of the skills you would have learned during your time in the military. Some examples would be proficiency in a foreign language, coding, recruiting, or data analysis.

Soft Skills

Soft skills are harder to measure. They are not specific, are more universal, and are difficult to completely define. Some examples might be good communication, organization, teamwork, and leadership. 

It might be easier to define your hard skills from military service than your soft skills, but they are important too and something employers look for. Many of your soft skills you were able to perfect while serving. Think about how these skills would be valuable to a future employer. For example, if you were a team leader in the Army, leadership is a useful soft skill that employers look for in a management-type position. 

If you are unsure about how to translate your skills into the civilian world, find a good MOS translator. You can find one at With this translator, enter your branch and MOS and it will give you a list of civilian skills as well as possible jobs for that MOS. This can come in handy if you are unsure about what to put on your list of transferable skills. 

List Transferable skills

You will need to spend some time making a list of all of your transferable skills. Think about the skills that would make sense for the job you want. When you are job searching, take a look at what the position is wanting in terms of skills and how they match with the skills you have because of your time in the military. 

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What are the hard or technical skills that you gained from your MOS or time in the military?
  • What soft skills can you add from your time in the military? 
  • What skills can you add from any certifications that you have completed? 
  • What is your backstory and what can you pull from those experiences that will translate into skills, beyond your time in the military?

Most Important Transferable Military Skills

According to an Indeed article, these are the 12 most important transferable military skills:

  1. Communication
  2. Adaptability in the face of adversity
  3. Flexibility
  4. Problem-solving
  5. Technical skills
  6. Integrity
  7. Teamwork
  8. Leadership
  9. Organization
  10.  Compliance
  11.  Strategic Planning
  12.  Dedication

You may have some or all of these skills or even more specific ones. Your background can help determine what your future career will look like, but also, don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Skills that you used in one type of MOS or job in the military could translate to a different type of career. 

Once you have made a list of your transferable skills you will be much better prepared for searching and applying for jobs.





Military Employment Guide: Resume Writing for Military

Step by Step Guide to Employment: Resume for General Military

You have spent the time to figure out what you want your post-military career to look like. You have figured out what you want to pursue, and what types of jobs to apply for. But, before you even apply for these jobs, you need to make sure your resume is done and done correctly. 

You might never have had to create a civilian resume, or maybe you haven’t worked on yours for a long time. Having a good resume is very important. You want to present your best self, starting with your resume. Doing so will grab the attention of the company and help sell your strengths, and hopefully get you that job interview. 

Format – Functional and Chronological

You have a choice between using a functional resume or a chronological resume. What’s the difference? A functional resume groups your skills by job function or expertise. Your skills and achievements are divided into specific areas of expertise. 

A chronological resume is the more common type of resume. They capture your work experience from the most recent job to the oldest job. All of your skills and accomplishments would be listed within each job section. 

Build a Master Resume With All Employment Experience (5 -6 pages)

You will now want to start working on your master resume. This would be a document that would list all of your information. You wouldn’t necessarily send this out to anyone but would use it to pull information for when you are putting a resume together for a particular job. 

On your master resume you would want to include the following:

  • Work History 
  • Education
  • Achievements
  • Awards
  • Skills
  • Training
  • Publications
  • Certifications
  • Licenses
  • Part-time work
  • Volunteer information 

Once you have created your master resume, you will be able to see everything you have to offer a future company. It can also show you any gaps you may have or what you could potentially do for a job. 

Gather up old resumes and other paperwork to help get all the information together. Remember this could take some time. Include as much information as you can. It does not have to be as short as the resume you will send out for a job. 5-6 pages is ideal. 

Make sure to translate everything into civilian terms. Civilians won’t know what most military acronyms mean. Use’s Military Skills Translator to help you figure out what the civilian terms would be. 

Professional Resume (1 – 2 pages)

Once your master resume is complete, you can start on your professional resume, which is what you would use to apply for most jobs. This would be 1-2 pages and summarize what an employer would need to know, based on the job you are applying for. You might have different professional resumes for different types of jobs.

Catalog Your Accomplishments, Awards, Publications

Go through your master resume and find what accomplishments, awards, and publications to include that can help you stand out when applying for this particular job. Use numbers to highlight your accomplishments, such as “Managed a team of 10.” Include military honors and awards.

Education and Training 

Include all of your education and training, especially what would directly apply to the job you are applying to. Translate your skills from military to civilian terms. You want the potential employer to be able to easily see what you have to offer, in terms they understand. Include the educational institutions and the degrees earned, but dates can be optional. 

Job History

Add your job history including the name of the company, your position, the dates that you worked there, and your job duties. This includes your time in the military. Remember, your work history might be the most important part of your resume.

Identify Your Marketable Skills

Marketable skills are skills that when added to your resume, boost your chances of getting an interview. Some examples would be content writing, project management, social media, and bookkeeping. Go through your previous employment or volunteer work and pull out your marketable skills and make sure they are on your resume. 

Professional References

You may be asked to provide professional references. You wouldn’t want to put them on your resume to begin with. It would be a good idea to gather them so you are ready if they are asked for. Professional references are people that can provide a recommendation and confirm your qualifications for a particular job. Think about former professors or teachers, former employers or coworkers, and even former clients you may have worked for in the past. 

You can also get help with putting together your resume. Here is a list of places that can help you do so:



Military Employment Guide: Cover Letters

Step By Step Guide to Employment: Cover Letters for Military

Cover letters are an important part of the application process. You will need to submit one in order to introduce yourself to the employer and get them to read your resume. Cover letters give you a chance to sell yourself and let the employer know you are serious about the job.

There are some things you should do to make sure your cover letter stands out and is taken seriously by the companies you are applying for. Finding that after military job can take a while but having a top-notch cover letter can put you ahead of the game. 

a. Make the cover letter personal

Your contact information is super important. Make sure to include your name, physical address, telephone number, and a professional email address. This may mean creating a new one just for applying for jobs. 

You will also need to address who you are writing to. Use a formal greeting, “Dear,” as well as Mr. or Ms followed by their last name. If you don’t know the correct way to address someone, use their full time. 

You might have to take time to figure out the correct name for the hiring manager, although most of the time you can find them in the job description. You can do this by searching online, looking on the company website, or by simply contacting the company directly for the name. 

b. Sympathize with the company’s issue(s)

Every company has a reason for the position you are applying for. They need to solve a problem, whether it is to bring in more money through sales or attend to the admin work that needs to be done. You can sympathize with the company’s issue, and what they are looking for in a new hire. 

c. Offer yourself as a solution

Once you understand what the company is needing, you can offer yourself as a solution. How will you add value? What problems can you help solve? Show in words how what you have done in the past will be good for a future company. If a future employer can see how you specifically can help the company with their mission or goals, you have a higher chance of getting an interview. 

d. Be detailed

Be detailed with your cover letter. You will want to highlight 2-3 of your skills and abilities. You will want to show them what you can bring to the company. 

For the time you spent in the military, you can showcase how your military service can help you in a civilian job. You can showcase specific examples of your military experience or skills that show your abilities. Try to connect what you did in the military to the job you are trying to get. 

Go through the job description to figure out what qualifications the employer is actually looking for. Include any achievements from your time in the military. Don’t include what you are missing. That will not help you be able to get the job. 

Keep in mind that your cover letter is not just another resume. It should be no longer than one page, around 3-4 paragraphs. 

In conclusion, thank them for their time and consideration and talk about your interest in the job. Let them know that you are looking forward to discussing the position further with a job interview. Finish the letter with a “Sincerely” and your full name. 

You can use a cover letter template. Here are a few places to find them:

e. Send a paper copy of your cover letter (with resume) directly to the hiring manager

You will be sending a paper copy of your cover letter to the hiring manager, along with your resume. Make sure you have proofread the cover letter before you do so. You want the cover letter to be as professional and polished as possible. 

Use business letter format and make sure you follow any instructions about the cover letter that is found in the job description. You will want to make sure that you have a cover letter that is customized for each job. You don’t want to use just one for every job you are applying for. 





Military Employment Guide: Elevator Pitches

Step By Step Guide to Employment:  The Elevator Pitch for General Military

During your journey to find a new job after the military, having a good elevator pitch is a must. You will be able to use the pitch in many different places. But what exactly is an elevator pitch? Here is what you need to know.

What is an elevator pitch?

An elevator pitch is a quick intro to who you are, what you do, and what value you can add to a company. The name comes from the time it takes you to ride in an elevator, not very long. Your elevator pitch is your first impression to a new company or contact. They shouldn’t be longer than 30-60 seconds. 

What goes into an elevator pitch?

  • Talk about yourself in a professional context. You want to include the details that make sense for the job you are trying to get.
  • Make it compelling. You will want to spark the person’s interest in you. Remember, this is what will draw them in so they will want to work with you.
  • Talk about some of your skills, you do not have to talk about every single one.
  • Talk about your assets. What can you bring to the company? What do you have to offer?
  • Remember, in this case, it is okay to brag about yourself.
  • Talk about what you are looking for such as, “I am looking for a job in finance” or “I am currently looking for a job in sales.”
  • Include your military service. Mention the branch you served in, how long, and some of the skills you used during your time in the service.
  • Don’t include your entire work history. You won’t have time and that isn’t necessary.

Tips for your elevator pitch

  • Practice practice practice. You will want to practice your elevator pitch. You can do so with family and friends, or by recording yourself. You don’t want to come across like a robot. Practicing will help the elevator pitch flow naturally.
  • Know your audience and who you will be talking to, at least generally as in the case of a job fair.
  • Bring a business card, as well as a resume if you will be using your elevator pitch at a job fair.
  • Try not to speak too fast. You want to slow down so others can fully understand you.
  • Create different pitches based on where you will be using them and who you will be pitching to. This is very important if you will be applying for different types of jobs.
  • When starting your pitch, give your full name, extend your hand for a handshake, and tell the person you are talking to that it is nice to meet them.

Where to use an elevator pitch?

  • Career or job fair
  • A professional networking event (this would be with the goal of making contacts)
  • Job interview
  • LinkedIn profile

Quick template for your elevator pitch

Make sure your elevator pitch includes:

  • Intro, who are you?
  • What do you do and how do you do it?
  • What has happened because of your work and how are you unique?
  • What can you offer the new company?
  • End with a call to action

Craft and rehearse your pitch many times before you will actually use it. Having it ready to go will help you be even more prepared for your job search and will give you a clearer understanding of the type of job you are going for. It will also give you the confidence to go after what you want when it comes to your post military career.





Military Employment Guide: Purchasing Business Attire

Step by Step Guide to Employment: General Military Community – Purchase Business Attire

When it comes to finding a job after the military, the interview will be a big step to getting hired. You might need to go for more than one, depending on the company. And whether the interview is in person or virtual, you want to be dressed correctly for it.

What you wear to the interview matters. For most interviewers, you want to dress in appropriate business attire.

What is business attire?

Business attire is clothing that is appropriate for the workplace. This may differ slightly depending on the type of job or environment. You should research and be aware of what type of clothing is acceptable with this particular employer, and lean on the side of formal.

What does business attire look like?

  • Business Traditional is more formal. For men, this could include a formal suit or tie, an upscale sports jacket, and dress pants. For women, this could be a skirt suit, pantsuit, and formal blouse and stockings.
  • Smart Casual is a step down from business traditional. For men, this could include a sports jacket with a tie, dress pants, and a button-down shirt. For women, this could be a dressy sweater, dress pants or a skirt, a blouse, and a top.
  • Business Casual is even more casual than the other two. For men, this could include khakis, or dress pants, shirts with collars, and sweaters. For women, this could include nice pants, skirts, a blouse, or a top.

What you should think about when it comes to your interview outfit?

In addition to sticking with business attire, you also need to think about the comfort and fit of your outfit. The clothing might pass all the business attire tests but if you don’t feel comfortable with what you are wearing, that isn’t going to set you up for success. You don’t want to get distracted by your clothing when you should be focused on presenting yourself to a potential employer.

You want your clothing to fit well, and not be too baggy or too tight. You want to be able to walk around comfortably. Practice wearing your clothes and moving around in them before the actual interview.

You want your clothing choices to also make you feel confident. If your clothing makes you feel that way, you will be able to more easily show confidence at the interview.

What shouldn’t you wear to an interview?

There are certain items you shouldn’t wear to a job interview. You don’t want to wear anything too revealing, remember you aren’t dressing for a night out with friends. Think about the colors you are choosing, and try not to go with too bright of colors or extreme patterns. If in doubt, keep the clothing more conservative.

Stay away from words on your shirts. While the wording might not be inappropriate to you, you never know what might be for the company. This isn’t professional and could lead to not being taken as such or offending someone by the words, whatever they might be.

You should stay away from flip flops, sandals, ripped jeans, tank tops, halter tops, yoga pants, athletic gear, or athletic shoes. Also, watch for heavy cologne, and too much makeup. Remember, less is probably best.

What if you have a video interview?

If you have a video interview, treating it like an in-person interview is the best way to go. You want to make sure you get ready just like you would if you were going somewhere for the interview. You should be aware of clothing that looks good on camera and stick to more neutral colors.

First impressions go a long way when it comes to a job interview. Potential employers will be judging you from the minute you walk through that door. Your outfit and how you present yourself matters. You want your outfit to show you are confident and want the job. That you are taking this seriously and you are professional. Your outfit can make or break an interview.




Military Employment Guide: Professional Headshots

Step by Step Guide to Employment: Professional Headshots

You might not realize it, but when looking for a job, your photo matters. Why? Because your photo is what you will show the world, whether it’s for when you attend a virtual event or job fair, for your LinkedIn profile, or any other time you would need to include a photo when it comes to your job search.

Why do you need a headshot?

Think of your headshot as your logo. Your image matters. Your photo is how you can get noticed and stand out to get the job that you want. Your photo can also be the first impression anyone has of you.

You will want to use your headshot for virtual job fairs or events and in your LinkedIn profile. For virtual events, you want to appear as an actual person, not just a blank profile. This shows that you are serious about finding a job and are ready for the event.

Likewise, you also want to appear as a real person on LinkedIn. While using a photo of your dog or child is cute on other social media sites, doing so on LinkedIn isn’t a good idea. If you are actively looking for a job, you want the photo to be a professional photo of you, and no one else.

Will any image be okay for a headshot?

No, you want the image to be clear and professional-looking. This doesn’t mean you have to pay a photographer for a headshot, but doing so can be the easiest way to get a good picture. What you don’t want to do is grab a selfie or take a quick shot to get one. If you do plan to take your own photo, you will want to plan the session out to get the best shot.

You can DIY a headshot photo if need be. Make sure you find the right background and good lighting. Use a timer or ask a friend for help and make sure to take the shoot seriously, even if you are the one behind the camera.

If you are going with a professional photographer, try to find one who has a lot of experience with headshots. Make sure they are able to capture you in a way that shows your personality but also stays professional. A professional photographer should know how to capture the correct look for a photo to use in your job search.

How should you prepare for your shoot?

Whether you are going to take your own photo or hire a professional, you need to prepare for the shoot. Make sure to sleep well the night before, you want to appear refreshed. Do your hair and make-up, and prepare as if you are headed to a job interview.

Pick out clothes that are flattering. Think about what you would wear for a job interview, and find something similar. Business-appropriate is the best way to go, but also know your industry. A Hawaiian shirt might be appropriate for certain jobs while not for others.

What should you do with the photo when you get it?

Once you get your photo done, or sent to you by the photographer, you need to make sure the photo is the correct size. For LinkedIn, the ideal size for your photo is 400 by 400 pixels. For a virtual job fair or networking event, find out what size they require. Getting multiple sizes of your image from your photographer is a smart idea.

When you are going through the process of looking for a job, make sure to plan for getting a headshot done. If it has been a few years, you should update the one you have. People change over the years and you should have a current photo as a headshot, not one from five years ago. Having a professional and updated headshot is an important part of the job search.


Military Employment Guide: LinkedIn

Step-by-Step Guide to Employment for the General Military –  LinkedIn

An important part of your journey to finding an after military job would be to set up a LinkedIn account if you haven’t already. LinkedIn was created in 2003 and is a social media networking and job searching site. Since 2016, it has been a subsidiary of Microsoft. There are over 700 million registered members and is one of the best places to network online.

LinkedIn Goals

The first step is creating an account, and figuring out your goals for LinkedIn. If you are wanting to use the site to find a job or other opportunity it is best to have a goal of making 200+ connections. You also want to join 20+ veteran or interest groups, and follow 20+ companies.

Profile Photo

As you are setting up your account, you will want to start with a good profile photo. Make sure the photo looks professional, but also looks like you. You also want to be dressed in business attire, and only you in the photo. Don’t use a photo of you in uniform. The photo should be 400×400.

Background Photo

Don’t leave your background photo blank. You will want to show who you are through the photo, who your target market is, or highlight your achievements. The photo should be 1584×396.

LinkedIn Profile Headline

Your profile headline is the line that is under your name. This is what people see in the search results. You will want to customize what it says vs just putting a title. Look at this as an elevator pitch in 120 characters. Tell people what you do.

LinkedIn Summary

Your LinkedIn Summary is your about section. You have a limit of 2,000 words, and the first three lines are visible before visitors will need to click on “see more.”

In the summary, you want to speak about your skills, experiences, and professional interests.

Your Experience

In your experience section, you will want to highlight your job experience, your responsibilities, and your accomplishments. Typically you will want to add the last 10-15 years of your work history.

This is the section where you will add your military experience. Make sure you put when you entered service and your military branch. This will identify you as a veteran. When adding skills for time in the military, make sure they fit with the job you are currently wanting to find.

When filling out your experience and even your summary and headline, remember to speak civilian. You are looking for a civilian job and you want civilians to be able to understand your experience and your skills.

Your Education

When it comes to your education section, you may start with high school or college. Whatever schools you list, connections from those places will be able to find you. Make sure to also add vocational schools, certificates, and any other education you have had.

Looking to further your education?  Use CollegeRecon to find military friendly schools.

LinkedIn Endorsements

Endorsements are unique to LinkedIn and allow your connections to endorse you for your skills. This can help boost your credibility which helps you in your job search. You can choose to accept them or not and you can choose which ones to list on your profile. Don’t get too hung up on them but they can be an added benefit to your profile.

Your Accomplishments

Add your accomplishments to your profiles. There are any publications you are in, courses you have taken, projects you have been involved in, honors, awards, and even the different languages that you speak.

Your Interests

The interest section on LinkedIn is where you can connect with people on a more personal basis. You can add your hobbies and your interests and show that you are interested in more than just work. This makes you appear as a more well-rounded person.

Building LinkedIn Connections

One of the biggest benefits of LinkedIn is the connections you can make. You can easily see what your connections are saying and liking and they can see what you are in return. This allows you to easily find others in your niche or industry.

Find people you have met in person at conferences and networking events and connect with them. You don’t have to find all of your first 200 connections in one day, but make it a priority to be adding to your network on a daily basis. Connect with those you served with, those in your industry, and even those you went to school with if it makes sense to do so. You want to build up your network.

Join groups that have to do with your industry or your interests. Post often to create engagement. Be an active part of the community.

Building Relationships

You want to build relationships with people on LinkedIn beyond just being connected. You can do this by engaging and commenting on your connections’ posts, being helpful, and sharing your own experiences.

Your Location

When it comes to what you should put for your location, you should put where you are wanting to look for work. If you plan to move somewhere new, you would want to put that as search relies heavily on location. This will also tell recruiters that you are looking for work in their area.






Military Employment Guide: Networking for Military & Veterans

Step by Step Guide to Employment: Networking for Military & Veterans

As a job seeker looking for your first after military job, networking is going to be a big part of the process. There are different ways to network, from hearing about job opportunities from people you know to attending networking events. As you look to see what is available to you, make sure to be prepared. Here is what you need to know.

Virtual Networking Events

Virtual events are more common now than they have ever been. A virtual networking event means you can log in from your own home. This gives you the flexibility to attend events all over the US or even the world.

  • You will be using audio and video and could be talking one-on-one with people or in a group setting. You will want to make sure to dress professionally and make sure your workplace is clean and quiet with good lighting.
  • Make sure to test your camera, and that your internet connection is reliable.
  • Be prepared to upload your resume and have that ready to go.
  • Plan to log on early, and plan out your time at the event. There could be different options of where to spend your time.

Next StepVirtual Job Fairs for Military and Veterans

In-person Networking Events

In-person networking events can be local-based, which is a plus if you are looking for a job in your local area. They can also be a good way to make connections at companies that offer jobs nationwide.

  • If attending in-person, figure out your goals for the day. Know what you are wanting to get out of the event.
  • Plan your outfit as if you are going to a job interview. You want to make a good first impression.
  • Find events that align with your goals and match what you are looking for.
  • Go into the event planning to meet people and establish relationships with potential employers and business partners. Through these relationships, you should be able to find opportunities or potential opportunities.
  • If the networking event offers a career fair, you will be able to meet with employers, recruiters, as well as schools. Some employers could be recruiting for specific jobs on that day, and others could be getting their information out there.
  • Know and rehearse your elevator pitch. You will need it. Your elevator pitch should be around 30 seconds and highlight your skills, goals, and what you are looking for. Prepare and practice before the event.
  • Prepare your LinkedIn ahead of time. Add people from the event, and make sure your profile is complete and filled in. Once you connect with people you can connect with them on LinkedIn to continue your networking experiences.
  • Bring enough resumes. You don’t want to run out. Make sure the resume is updated and ready to go. Having business cards will also be important to have. Put everything in a professional-looking folder or binder.
  • When it comes to small talk, stay away from talking about politics, or complaints about past employers. Focus on why you are there at the event, the type of work you are looking for, and what you can bring to the table.

Next StepIn-Person Job Fairs for Military and Veterans

After the Event

After the networking event, you will want to spend some time decompressing all that you did. Stay organized and plan to follow up with people. Doing so will help you achieve the job goals you are working on.

There are many different types of networking events from industry-related events to professional conferences. Here are a few websites to help you find ones in your area or virtual events coming up that you can attend.





Exit mobile version