The key to getting ahead of the competition and realizing your business potential is to find and tap into some of the best tech talent in the country—our veterans.

By Adae Fonseca

The proliferation of cloud-based technology has sent efficiency and innovation skyrocketing across a vast range of industries, from energetic startups to massive enterprises and beyond. Developments across the tech industry over the last five years have made it possible for organizations the world over to challenge the limits of their respective sectors and innovate like never before. The nature of the tech industry, however, means that new products, services, capabilities and updates are released at a faster rate than the job market can keep up with, creating a skills gap that widens with each new technological advancement.

The key to getting ahead of the competition and realizing your business potential is to find and tap into some of the best tech talent in the country—our veterans. As a nation, we do a great deal to celebrate those who have served our country and show them the appreciation they deserve once they have returned from active duty. While veteran unemployment rates dropped to 3.2% from 3.8% by December 2018, a huge number of our veterans remain unemployed, with businesses across the US missing out on the wealth of skills and unique experience that veterans acquire in service.

The best way to find and hire veterans transitioning into civilian roles is to do so through specialized training programs. These courses provide certified training that allows skilled veterans to build on their experience, and launch fulfilling careers in exciting and evolving technologies. If you’re looking to make 2019 the year you fill your company’s skills gap, then here are just a few of the reasons why you should be hiring veterans to continue driving your business forward.

1. Trained to lead  

Veterans will have been put into leadership roles early on in their military careers. From day one, they are taught to learn and lead by example, with comprehensive training and a level of experience that is difficult to find elsewhere. From basic training to the front line, those who have served have developed proven leadership skills well beyond that typically generated in civilian roles.

2. Excellent team players

Veterans are hardwired to value teamwork, and understand the importance of working together to complete tasks as a strong, unified force. They have been trained to think critically about what is best for the team as a whole, and what can be done individually in order to improve the way it operates. As most of what is accomplished in the working world is based on teamwork, veterans are already well ahead of the curve when it comes to collaboration and cohesion skills.

3. Experienced in complex tech

When it comes to tech, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a civilian candidate with the level of experience in cutting-edge technologies that most veterans possess. Modern military training covers areas such as technology, sales, management, and operations to a degree that far surpasses  that available to civilians. Veterans also thrive in the tech industry because of their discipline, attention to detail, ability to perform well under pressure, and sharp problem-solving skills.

4. Security clearance

The overwhelming majority of veterans have undergone detailed background checks across several levels of security clearance—a great asset in an age where tech security is at the top of the priority list all over the globe. If you hire a veteran, you can rest easy in the knowledge that they value security and confidentiality at the highest level. In cases where your company needs someone with security clearance, having a veteran on your team will save you time and money on specialized background checks.

5. Unbeatable work ethic

Veterans know not only how to get the job done, but how to do that in the most efficient way possible. Creating a strong work ethic is an integral part of their training, where they learn to depend on each other and persevere in extremely high-risk situations. Anyone in the forces knows that their success, and indeed their lives, depend on the integrity of their teammates. That makes for a truly admirable work ethic .

Adae Fonseca is a veteran with 23 years’ service and now leads the Veterans’ Program at Nelson Frank Tech Academy.

Veterans stock photo by Rachata Sinthopachakul/Shutterstock