Soldier for Life

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Army, RecruitMilitary partnership to connect veterans with DAV services

The transition from military to civilian life is a multilayered and often challenging process, but now soldiers exiting service will have additional resources to help them along the way.

Longtime DAV partner RecruitMilitary, a Bradley-Morris company, was recently enlisted by the Army to provide employment services and resources through the Army’s Soldier for Life-Transition Assistance Program to help active, Guard and Reserve soldiers and their spouses. As a result, DAV will have a unique avenue to extend its no-cost services to families in need.

According to a 2018 Department of Veterans Affairs report, “The Military to Civilian Transition,” roughly 100,000 men and women transition out of the Army each year. Annually, this accounts for half of all transitioning service members.

“We all know how important it is for veterans to get their civilian lives started on the right foot,” said National Employment Director Jeff Hall, a combat-wounded Army veteran. “This partnership just about guarantees that our nation’s soldiers and their spouses will have an opportunity to connect with DAV’s services through exclusive Soldier for Life career fairs. That means we will have a chance to help them both in finding a meaningful career and ensuring they receive the benefits they earned.”

DAV’s Veterans Pulse Survey found that 47% of veterans thought finding employment was their toughest transition obstacle, so being able to link exiting soldiers directly to DAV and RecruitMilitary’s co-hosted career fairs, which are now all virtual hiring events due to the COVID-19 outbreak, is a critical component to streamlining the process.

“This is a game changer,” said Chris Newsome, senior vice president at RecruitMilitary. “We are accustomed to capturing the attention of transitioning personnel once they have already transitioned, but getting the opportunity to support them as they are still in the on-base transition process makes this far more seamless.”

A transitioning service member can get hit with so much vital information at once that some important material can get lost in the shuffle, which makes the timing and these resources so important.

DAV’s Pulse Survey also discovered that only 38% of veterans thought they had the support they needed when leaving the military. Furthermore, just 35% of veterans thought their benefits were clearly explained to them and only 37% said they were aware of what benefits they qualified for and how to take advantage of them.

“Another vitally important connection these individuals will have are DAV benefits and claims experts, which have been the leader in their field for the past century,” Hall said. “Being able to introduce these tools to them early in their transition process is critical to setting them up for success in the next phase of their life.”

Another important factor of this partnership is its national reach.

“We are now able to help these men and women get connected with opportunities regardless of where they will reside next,” Newsome said. “Roughly 60% to 70% of transitioning personnel go somewhere other than the installation they are transitioning from. Some go back to their home of record, while others follow significant others, friends or opportunities.

“The trouble is that many aren’t able to truly explore the opportunities in alternative markets until they’re already there,” added Newsome. “It puts them behind the curve. Now, these men and women can search on a national or even an international level for the right opportunity.”

There are many helpful resources available to those transitioning from military service; however, this can lead to confusion and lead many into an abyss of inactivity.

“The significance of connecting hundreds of thousands of transitioning soldiers each year with a powerful ensemble of career resources and benefit experts while they are still wearing the uniform is not only an important partnership, it’s smart,” Hall said.

“DAV and RecruitMilitary complement each other, as we both have unique core competencies,” Newsome said. “DAV enhances our services while also tying in services that steward soldiers in a more holistic manner, such as access to benefits, claims processing, legal advocacy and representation on Capitol Hill.

“Together, we can truly take the soldier under our wing and streamline meaningful and impactful outcomes.”

Transitioning soldiers can begin their exploration of the program at recruitmilitary.com/army. Once there, soldiers can create their professional profile, build their resume, access resources and review how-to content that covers everything from resume writing to best practices for interviewing.