After years of service to our great nation, you have decided to start a career in the civilian world. Making this transition is rather difficult because many things are totally different. Take occupation for example. You need a bachelor’s degree to get a job because many civilian employers require it.
You may not have a degree because you have decided to dedicate your life to serving your country. This is a whole different kind of ball game for employers because many of them perceive vets as unable to do civilian jobs. However, bachelor’s degree and military experience have a lot in common; moreover, the latter provides even more training than the former. As the result, it can give you an advantage.
To make sure that you use this advantage, read this article and see what should be done.
Military experience as source of superior skills for your resume
To be better than your competitors, you need to demonstrate that your skills are superior. This shouldn’t be difficult because some of the skills you mastered in the military are indeed far more advanced!
First, perseverance. Other candidates survived through college and tested their skills on civilian jobs. That’s good enough, right? Well, did they have a drill sergeant in their faces every day breaking them down? Did they live a tough lifestyle you learned in the military? No, so they don’t know what a real perseverance is. You do, so include this in your resume to stand out.
Second, communication skills. Those with degrees know how to present information to the colleagues because they learned this skill in college. You know how to do this too, even better! You have orally briefed senior leaders, wrote countless papers explaining your understanding of complex real-life situations, and wrote reports that synthesized difficult subject matter into presentations for leaders. This requires some serious communication skills as well!
Third, teamwork. Many candidates that compete with you to get a job don’t even know how to work in a team. You, on the other hand, performed numerous missions in a team, delegated roles, made critical decisions, and collaborated to get the mission done. Your knowledge on teamwork might be far more advanced than anyone who applies for the same job as you, so include this skill in your resume and let them know what you can do!
Fourth, your work ethics may also be more superior. You understand the importance of adhering to the schedule and performing the job consistently better than anyone. Many of your opponents may not share these views and abilities because they have not lived the military lifestyle that values a strong work ethic. Former military members usually perform well on companies like professional writing services where one needs to compete with many other candidates and demonstrate superior work ethics. So, this quality also should be included in your resume.
Outline your strengths and be prepared to provide examples in terms of skills, personal qualities, and past experiences. Undoubtedly, your presentation of yourself will be much more convincing to the interviewer if you share concrete examples of how you applied your skills to deliver outstanding results.
Learn about the position and connect it to your experience
Your career in the military is well-documented through certifications, performance evaluations, and awards. They should be used to your advantage, especially in case they are relevant to the job you are applying for. Think about how to make your experience and training make sense to the interviewer; for example, you can provide awards and other documents you received during the service to show that are good at particular things.
So, before you apply for a job, check the skills it requires and see whether you have something to show the interviewer to impress him/her. This evidence can make you relevant to the position, so your chances of getting it will be better.
You might also be asked: “why should we hire you?”, so it’s better to be prepared. Think of situations, challenges, or projects in the military that highlight your skills relevant for the job. Select several skills, they will be a core of your answer to this question.
Finally, you can use some facts to your advantage. For example, you can say that the current cost incurred to a business sustaining an employee is over $30.00 per hour per employee. This translates into huge costs in both short- and long-term but the employer won’t have to worry about this with you because you have an intrinsic understanding of loyalty and its importance for building a work environment. Therefore, you are a thoughtful long-term investment that can easily outperform other candidates.
The Bottom Line
Former military members have a lot under their belts, and they can use their past experience to get ahead of the competition. Use the tips given in this article to get that job you want, and let your civilian career be prosperous!