According to information from Cisco, “By 2016, more than 1 million U.S. military personnel are expected to transition to civilian life, including approximately 300,000 by August 2013.” A big part of that transition will be finding employment.
While in active duty, military personnel gain unique knowledge, skills and experience that can provide value to many roles across a wide range of industries in today’s job environment. The challenge is that often their skills and training cannot be directly correlated to the job descriptions of many civilian roles, making it difficult to find a suitable position. To support returning military personnel in finding work that matches their qualifications, Cisco has introduced the Veterans Program.
“Hiring veterans is not only a good thing to do, it also makes good business sense,” says Michael Veysey, director of Cisco’s Veterans Program. “Their knowledge, training, and experience, often under extreme conditions, demonstrate that they can thrive in a competitive and dynamic business environment.” (Source: Cisco Blogs http://blogs.cisco.com/?p=75546)
Here are just a few of the ways the Cisco Veterans Program is helping these homecoming heroes find meaningful work as they enter the next important stage of their lives.
100,000 Jobs Mission
The 100,000 Jobs Mission is a coalition of more than 80 companies, mostly Fortune 500, that have committed to hiring 100,000 veterans by 2020. As a founding member of the group, Cisco is demonstrating their support of the many veterans looking for work. They are also encouraging their channel partners to participate in this initiative by hiring veterans. KBZ is proud to support this mission and employs several veterans.
Cloud-based Job Resource Portals
Cisco has collaborated with software developers Futures, Inc., investing more than $1 million to create job resource portals for military personnel. These cloud-based portals use a sophisticated algorithm to match military job skill codes to civilian job openings, helping veterans find the positions that are best suited to their experience. These portals also include added functionality such as a resume builder, plus email and SMS notifications, so users can be contacted when there is a potential job match. (Source: Cisco http://csr.cisco.com/casestudy/veterans-program)
Cisco Networking Academy
Cisco Networking Academy® helps people train for careers in information and communication technology (ICT). To deliver these programs, Cisco partners with educational institutions, non-profits and nongovernmental organizations, governments and community centers that provide classroom space, equipment, and instructors.
The Networking Academy offers courses at 1,860 locations nationwide, with 21 locations on U.S. Army, Marine and Navy bases. According to Cisco, these military locations have provided an opportunity for nearly 33,000 active and transitioning military personnel to train for entry-level ICT certifications and jobs.
Virtual Job Interviews
To find work, many veterans attend job fairs in which they bring their resumes with the hopes of connecting with future employers. Futures, Inc. held three pilot events at Fort Bragg, with participation by Cisco. Military personnel and their families had submitted their resumes prior to the event, then were invited by companies to attend an actual job interview. Cisco provided WebEx® video conferencing technology to enable virtual job interviews with companies who were not able to attend the event.
Some participants walked away with more than one job offer. According to Michael Veysey, “Out of 954 vets who registered for the three events, 127 received job offers at the event, with an additional 180 expected to follow. According to the Army, these are the most successful hiring events they've ever had.” (Source: Cisco Newsroom http://newsroom.cisco.com/feature-content?type=webcontent&articleId=1101449)
The U.S. military has recognized Cisco for their support of initiatives to hire veterans. U.S. Veterans Magazine has included Cisco on its 2012 “Best of the Best” list of Top 100 Companies Recruiting Veterans. (Source: Cisco Blogs http://blogs.cisco.com/csr/cisco-best-of-the-best-for-military-veterans/)
For more information on the Cisco Veterans program visit http://csr.cisco.com/casestudy/veterans-program.
Veronica Culver is the Corporate Marketing Manager at KBZ, responsible for all corporate and partner communications, PR, social media, digital marketing, website management, and webinars. She’s also a food blogger and photographer. Connect with her on Twitter: @VeronicaCulver