Vets returning home from war face some incredible difficulties: injuries, mental health issues, and settling back into civilian life. After tours abroad in the most recent warzone—Afghanistan—vets are used to a different pace than being a normal citizen requires. Many are returning home without feeling confident that they will be able to find work to support themselves.
According to a recent survey, by Monster Worldwide Inc., only 29% of vets think they’ll be able to find suitable work—and it’s not just because of the tough job market. Most employers (61%) are also doubtful that recent vets are ready for a change of career.
A big part of the problem is that employers don’t understand the skills and extent of military work, and therefore can’t connect how they could carry over into other work. And vets are used to a team setting, which means interviews can be difficult because they are expected to talk themselves up. In short, there’s a huge communication problem.
Luckily for vets, there are some assistive services available to help bridge the gap. For example, Veterans on Wall Streets (VOWS) is an initiative designed to help vets find work in the global financial services industry. VOWS’ mission is to help vets translate the skills developed during military service to Wall Street. They aim to develop, support, and keep vets working in global financial services.
KKR has also developed a program called Vets @ Work, which recruits vets into work for their portfolio companies. Much like VOWS, this initiative recognizes the unique skills of vets and helps them apply them to financially focused careers.
Hopefully, programs like these will continue to develop and support vets as they return home from tours. The last thing vets need when returning home is one more struggle—and if initiatives like these can keep providing support, that will be one less thing they have to worry about.