4 Ways It Pays to Hire Veterans for Your Small Business

November 11, 2016 Pete Jansons

Happy healthy ethnic army soldier with copy space on the right

Nearly 250,000 service members transition out of the military every year. Could one of them be your small business’s next great hire? Providing job opportunities for veterans not only feels like the right thing to do, it makes good business sense. Consider the qualities these candidates typically bring to the table:

  • Resourcefulness

Small business employees often must do more with less. The same holds true for service members as they work with what they have out in the field to come up with viable solutions.

  • Grace under pressure

Adjusting to changes, evaluating circumstances, and making quick decisions are par for the course in military life. Expect ex-military to remain calm and goal-focused (and help others at your small business do the same) when asked to wear many hats or deal with challenging clients.

  • Professionalism

Employers often report that veterans are among their most honest, dependable and productive employees. The work ethic developed in the military can translate easily to other environments.

  • Teamwork

Colleagues at small businesses depend on each other too much and work in too limited of quarters to not get along. In the military, operating as a cohesive unit means survival. The ability of veterans both to lead and to follow directions can improve dynamics at your small business.

Aside from the talents these individual workers bring to your small business, the very act of bringing aboard veterans can be beneficial. Americans respect people who have served the country, so being known as a company that values veterans can increase good feelings about your brand.

Also, government contracts often involve specifics about affirmative action measures. If you’re interested in landing such business, having veterans on your staff may help with compliance.

And don’t neglect the possible tax credits. Amounts and qualifications vary, but you may be able to take advantage of incentives up to $9,600 per veteran hired.

Undoubtedly, though, your main concern is to find qualified workers. Attending veteran job fairs can be a great first step, as can advertising open position on veteran-specific job sites. You can find more information at the Department of Labor’s website, where you can also connect with a local Veteran Employment Representative.

Don’t forget, too, to tap any vets already on staff for hiring suggestions. Applicants hand-selected by people already familiar with your company’s culture and goals tend to work out better than candidates from a random pool. Your former service men and women likely will be more than happy to help out a fellow veteran.

Want to further aid ex-military members? Become a mentor to veterans looking to start their own small business. Connect them to leaders in your own network, help them navigate local resources, and introduce them to support options such as The Veterans Business Outreach Program and the Veteran Entrepreneur Portal. Serving those who have served us may be one of the most rewarding actions you’ll ever perform.

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