Military veterans are often a target market for employers and nonprofits alike. Companies like the soft skills, such as leadership, integrity and the ability to work under pressure, that veterans bring to the table. Nonprofits are often involved in the process as veterans acclimate to civilian life. And while there are more than 18 million veterans in the United States, connecting with them can be challenging. That’s where military giveaways can help.
The veteran advantage
Odyssey Technical Solutions in Round Rock, Texas, seeks out veterans to join its company. In fact, its employment roster is 46% veterans. It connects with veterans in several ways, including at Texas Veterans Commission and Texas Workforce Commission events.
Senior Director of Global Sales and Marketing, Larry Broome, brings a variety of promotional giveaways to boost awareness of their company. Most recently, it was a lanyard, similar to the Retractable Polyester Lanyard.
Boost awareness of your company with veterans!
While Broome seeks veterans for their unique skills, there is one skill he is quick to emphasize. “On the repair floor, it’s a real team atmosphere, and ex-military really fits into that because they’re very much ‘an all-for-one attitude,’” he said.
If you would like to reach veterans through job fairs, check out Recruit Military®. It offers a variety of military recruiting fairs across the country and online.
Other tactics to connect
Besides attending job fairs and events that focus on veterans, there are a number of other tactics you can use to reach out to this sought-after audience.
Find veterans via social media
When reaching out to veterans online, consider:
- Joining Facebook® and LinkedIn® groups that focus on veterans and their needs.
- Using relevant hashtags, such as #veteranhiring #veteranemployer or #militaryfriendly when posting jobs.
- Creating short videos featuring your current veteran staff, supporters or others discussing your organization. Post them to YouTube® and other relevant platforms.
- Using veteran-focused hashtags, like #vets #veterans #MilitaryMonday #SOV (Support Our Veterans) and #MilFam (Military Family) when posting broader opportunities.
You may also want to create your own hashtag if you post often. The annual National Veterans Wheelchair Games, uses its hashtag #NVWG when sharing information to capture attention and make events easier to find. Getting people to the Games is a year-round process.
“We’re in constant contact from the moment the last event ends,” Senior Associate Director of Sports and Recreation, Jennifer Purser, said. In addition to frequent social media posts, the organization sends multiple emails to people who have participated in the past. Because each game takes about two years to plan, the next date and location is already in place when current games wrap up.
Use military-to-civilian translators for job postings
While veterans learn a variety of useful skills in the military, many of their skill sets may have names that don’t typically align with civilian job postings. The MOC (MOS/AFSC/Ratings) Code to Civilian Occupations Translator can assist you with locating the proper military names for the skill sets you’re seeking.
Connect with military bases
If your organization is located near a military base, contact their transition office. This office assists veterans with separation and retirement programs, helping recent service members move into civilian roles. Connect with job seekers by hosting an industry workshop or seminar or offering to mentor transitioning individuals.
Contact Community Veteran Serving Organizations (VSOs)
Almost every community has a VSO that works with veterans to improve their lives. If you’re a nonprofit, partnering with another group whose work complements yours can help both of you locate veterans in need of your services.
For example, the Paralyzed Veterans of America and Department of Veterans Affairs maintains contact with sports coaches so they can share upcoming game information with players. Businesses can also build connections with nonprofits. Partnering with a VSO that aligns with your mission and values can be a great brand builder and create a pipeline of veteran talent.
Military giveaways keep memories fresh
Promotional giveaways can serve more than one purpose as you reach out to vets. At the National Veterans Wheelchair Games, swag builds excitement for current and future games and helps attendees cheer on the athletes.
“I loved the fact that people were using their FAN-ta-STICKS Stadium Bangers for cheering on the Games,” Purser said. “It brings a whole new level to the Games. Whenever our veterans can see cheering or they get a keepsake that reminds them of the event, it ups the excitement level of the Games.”
Sharing a salute
With so many veterans seeking jobs and services, connecting them to your organization is truly a win-win. By offering military giveaways and associating with like-minded organizations, you’ll bring more veterans to your door.
A reminder of veteran’s successes
Since 1985, the National Veterans Wheelchair Games have been a source of empowerment and fun. See how something as simple as promotional products can have a huge impact on self-esteem.
Branded swag builds excitement for the National Veterans Wheelchair Games.
Note: 4imprint is a sponsor of the National Veterans Wheelchair Games.
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