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Posts Tagged ‘veterans; military’

Maximizing Your Veterans Connect Career Fair Experience

Friday, March 14th, 2014

After success in San Diego, California in October of 2013, we will once again be hosting a Veterans Connect Career Fair –– this time in the Washington, D.C. metro area! Now more than ever, companies are looking to employ veterans, transitioning service members and their families to improve the labor market and provide opportunities to those looking for civilian jobs. This free event will take place at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City (2799 Jefferson Davis Hwy, Arlington, VA 22202, on Tuesday, March 25, 2014 from 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

As of this date, participating employers include:

This career fair will not only give veteran job seekers the opportunity to chat with employers, but also participate in on-site interviews, interact with other veterans at Vet-to-Vet tables, obtain resume and interview advice from an experienced recruiter, and much more. If you’re going to be in the D.C. metro area, take a moment and register today!

For those planning to attend, there are a few things you can do to maximize your experience:

  • Research the employers that will be participating to help you determine which ones are the best fit for your skills and interests.
  • Bring an updated copy of your résumé. We will be photocopying résumés to provide to the employers after the career fair, so no need to worry about bringing enough copies!
  • Dress professionally or as you would for an interview.
  • Make your military experience relevant to the occupation you’re seeking. In other words, relate your experience to employable skills and how they could make you an asset in a specific position.
  • Get a business card from every employer with whom you speak. This gives you the opportunity to follow-up after the career fair ends, which leads us to our last tip…
  • Follow-up with a thank you note and another copy of your résumé.

Can’t make it? Check out Veterans.jobs where you can search thousands of jobs based on your MOS/MOC, or register to participate in our upcoming online military career fair taking place April 17, 2014 from 12:00 – 3:00 p.m EDT. This free event allows you to network with a wide variety of reputable employers nationwide — all online from the comfort of your home. Best of luck in your search!

Connecting Members Through Partnerships

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

When partnering with other organizations, we seek to provide meaningful results to both parties, as well as our Members. To-date, each of our partners have become trusted allies, helping us to achieve our goals as an Association while increasing our reach.

One partnership that has grown ten-fold is our alliance with the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA), from which we formed the National Labor Exchange (NLx) in 2007. Upon creation, the goal of the NLx was to not only establish a cost-effective labor exchange, but also to better connect employers and state workforce agencies. The intention was always to have employers go beyond the reach of the NLx and work hand-in-hand with state workforce agencies to further cultivate their relationship. Member company Hilton Worldwide was able to do just that with the creation of Operation: Opportunity.

Announced on August 15th, Operation: Opportunity will provide extensive support to U.S. military veterans and their families by way of donating millions of Hilton HHonors points that veterans can redeem for free hotel stays while seeking jobs. Additionally, over the next five years, Hilton Worldwide looks to hire 10,000 veterans at company locations across the country. The National Association of State Workforce Agencies will play a strategic role in the program by distributing Hilton HHonors points to their over 2,651 American Job Centers (AJCs) across the country to be later used by veteran job seekers and their families.

DirectEmployers would like to congratulate Hilton and NASWA for their concerted effort. Are you a Member company that has created similar programs, for not only veterans, but for individuals with disabilities as well? Please share your story with us by commenting below or sending an email to Jaime@DirectEmployers. For more information on Operation: Opportunity, please review Hilton Worldwide’s official press release.

OFCCP Announces Final Rules for Updated Requirements of Section 4212 and 503

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Back in late April of 2011, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) regarding Section 4212 of the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA). Then, in December, another NPRM was issued for updates to Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act.

DirectEmployers Association immediately began working with our Recruitment Regulatory Compliance Committee (RRCC), as well as our National Labor Exchange (NLx) Operations Committee and our trusted partner, the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA), to help educate our Members on what it all meant and how to start preparing.

Today, all of those endless discussions, thousands of webinars, countless hours of preparation and speculation come to an end. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced the final rules for the updated requirements for the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 and Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. (View the official OFCCP News Release)

Key takeaways include:

  • The VEVRAA rule requires contractors to establish an annual hiring benchmark, either based on the national percentage of veterans in the workforce (currently 8%), or based on the best available data and factors unique to their establishments.
  • The Section 503 rule establishes an aspirational 7% utilization goal for the employment of individuals with disabilities.

More information about the final rules can be found directly on the Office of Federal Contractor Compliance Programs (OFCCP) website at http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/VEVRAARule/ and http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/503Rule/.

The OFCCP will also be holding webinars to help federal contractors better understand and comply with these new rulings. We would highly suggest that you, or someone from your team, plan on attending one the following from each category:

FCCP Webinars on the VEVRAA Final Rule
August 29, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. (Eastern) – http://www.dol.gov/find/vevraa-1
OR
September 11, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. (Eastern) – http://www.dol.gov/find/vevraa-2

OFCCP Webinars on the Section 503 Final Rule
August 30, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. (Eastern) – http://www.dol.gov/find/section503-1
OR
September 18, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. (Eastern) – http://www.dol.gov/find/section503-2

In the wake of this announcement, DirectEmployers Association reaffirms its commitment to providing advanced solutions and services that fulfill OFCCP requirements to our Member companies. We will continue collaborating with our partner NASWA to improve the National Labor Exchange (NLx) compliance solution. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to your Membership Development representative at (866) 268-6206.

Were you surprised that this happened today? Do you feel prepared?

Veterans Connect Career Fair Preview

Friday, June 28th, 2013

DirectEmployers Association and its Members make a concerted effort to reach veterans, military personnel and their families through a variety of partnerships and initiatives, including online and onsite career fairs. This fall, we are hosting the 2013 Annual Meeting & Conference in San Diego, California. To kick off the event and embrace the local military presence, we are holding our first-ever Veterans Connect Career Fair. This event takes place Monday, October 21, 2013 at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort from 10 am – 2 pm and gives attendees the opportunity to interact with a number of Fortune 500 and 1000 companies actively hiring.

By attending this event, veterans, transitioning servicemembers, and their families have the ability to meet face-to-face with recruiters, pass out resumes, participate in onsite interviews, network with other veterans, and even obtain valuable resume and interview advice. While we are still accepting employer registrations, participating employers currently include:

If you are seeking employment, be sure to search Veterans.jobs for open positions in your area. With the implementation of the Military Crosswalk tool, you can even search by your MOC/MOS code, or look for jobs near your military base.

If you’re stationed in San Diego, or in the area on October 21, we encourage you to register online for this free event today and take advantage of the opportunity to network and, possibly, find the career you’ve been looking for!

DirectEmployers’ Veteran Outreach More Than Just a Crosswalk

Friday, June 7th, 2013

More than 140,0000 searches containing the phrase “veterans jobs” are conducted on Google, Yahoo and Bing each month, with veterans and military servicemembers nationwide seeking employment for themselves and family living on or near military bases. Many employers attempt to simplify this search with the implementation of military crosswalks on their job search portal.

These platforms allow transitioning servicemembers to search by their Military Occupation Code (MOC) or Military Occupation Specialty (MOS) and be presented with jobs that match their military skills and experience in the civilian world. Unfortunately, it has been recognized that these systems aren’t always current with the most up-to-date information and may not provide the most appropriate recommendations.

These concerns raise the question, “What else are we doing to help our nation’s veterans find employment?” DirectEmployers Association (DE) provides more than a military crosswalk to Members. Through strategic partnerships and general outreach, we aim to leverage our resources to provide additional benefit to the membership and ultimately assist veterans. One such partnership, the Social Jobs Partnership (SJP), acts as a good faith effort to provide job search capabilities and job seeker advice through social media— often with a veteran-specific focus.

We work diligently behind the scenes with employers who are working directly with the veterans, in order to ensure that each vet has equal and ample opportunity to find a job that is the right fit for them. This includes partnering with military-friendly organizations such as the Military Spouse Corporate Career Network (CASY-MSCCN) and Feds Hire Vets, among others, to expand the reach of job postings by Members and ensure that they are easily searchable by veterans. This is in addition to job syndication to over 3,000 local veteran outreach offices, provided by the National Labor Exchange (NLX).

Through membership with DirectEmployers, HR professionals have access to OFCCP compliance support, specifically regarding Sections 4212 and 503. In addition to having their jobs syndicated to veteran niche sites such as Veterans.jobs, DE offers further job distribution benefits to Members through their partnerships with the U.S. Army Reserve, U.S. National Guard, and VetSuccess.gov. We also go one step further to help facilitate linkage agreements among our Members and state workforce agencies, ultimately playing a major role in compliance.

In partnership with the National Association of State Workforce Agencies (NASWA), we have recently launched a series of online career fairs exclusively for veterans and their families. During these virtual events, employers can connect directly with veterans, transitioning military servicemembers and their family who may be seeking employment. We are also excited to announce our first ever in-person veteran career fair, Veterans Connect, set to take place at the 2013 DirectEmployers Annual Meeting & Conference (DEAM13) in San Diego, on Monday, October 21st.

Despite concerns, military crosswalks are still a viable resource to implement into your veteran outreach and sourcing strategies. Want tips on how to maximize your military crosswalk? Review this checklist to ensure that you are doing your best to help veterans find potential employment opportunities on your microsites, and be sure to register for Veterans Connect for the chance to meet face-to-face with our nation’s heroes.

The Employment Line, Episode 1: Military Online Career Fair, Social Media Mashup

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

With the New Year comes new business objectives and strategy. DirectEmployers has you covered! In this episode:

Keeping you connected, with no waiting—The Employment Line. Thank you for watching.

The Employment Line is brought to you by DirectEmployers, a non-profit association of global employers, which provides simple, sophisticated solutions for Human Resources and Recruitment.

Despite Present Barriers, Military Experience Positively Impacts Current and Future Career Path

Friday, November 30th, 2012

Although employers are trying to improve translating military skills to their civilian jobs, veterans frequently face hurdles around required degrees, certifications and licensures despite their experience in the field and military training.

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart aired a very eye-opening segment about the difficulty of turning military experience into civilian employment. The two former Iraq War combat medics in the segment shared their challenges and explained the need for a better transition program, education around resume writing and the need for veterans to come home with better certifications.

DirectEmployers has several staff and Member company representatives that are veterans, including Alicia Wallace of WellPoint, Mike Seidle of DirectEmployers Foundation and Lance Sapera of 24 Hour Fitness. With Veterans Day being earlier this month and the public discussion around returning soldiers, I reached out to them for insight about how their experiences helped them in their civilian careers, and sought their advice for veterans currently searching for gainful employment in the civilian workforce. Here’s what they had to say:

Alicia Wallace, MBA, EEO Program Manager, Disability Outreach, HR, Diversity & Inclusion, WellPoint
“My transition from the military to corporate America was a long one. My first job out of the military was with the Department of Defense then with the Department of Labor. I served In the United States Army on active duty as a non-commissioned officer after attending several years of college. I moved quickly through the ranks from Private First Class to Staff Sergeant within six years as a Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Sergeant. I was selected as a unique member of the U. S. All-Army Track & Field team. I won a very grueling competition at Fort Stewart, Georgia, toughest female in the 24th Infantry Division and was recognized by General Norman Schwarzkopf. I was also the first female ever assigned to the 91st Chemical Company and first female selected to coach the Army’s track team.

Alicia’s Advice:
“Continue to learn as much as possible while in the military, go to school and obtain a degree, if possible, around your military assignments. When transitioning into a civilian career, identify one that best fits your experience level, education and offers the best use of your skills. Also try and access which type of environment and industry works best, one which is highly structured? One where innovation is valued? What about working as part of a team? Or working independently? Take the time to do a personal assessment before diving in. Unlike military assignments, civilian environments don’t change managers and teams, every 2-3 years. You may work under the same boss or with the same team for many years.”

Mike Seidle, Director of Development, DirectEmployers Foundation
“When I got out of the service, my military experience allowed me to get a part time job that paid enough for me to support my family and attend college. Between Veterans benefits and my job, I was able to escape the college experience without student loan debt. Employers were absolutely willing to give a vet with an honorable discharge a shot… even against far more qualified candidates. When I left college and joined the workforce, employers seemed much more interested in my military experience than in my education.

As a business owner prior to joining DirectEmployers and in finding my job at DirectEmployers, being a veteran was always a plus. “

Mike’s Advice:
“Make sure you are being hired by the right employer — a company where you can see yourself working for years. If you see a potential employer treating people in a way you would not like to be treated or doing things you would not want to be asked to do, then find another opportunity.”

Lance Sapera, Director, Talent Acquisition, 24 Hour Fitness
“When I retired from the Navy, I was both excited about the opportunity and apprehensive about joining the private sector. Fortunately, I had a strong network of family, friends and professional acquaintances supporting my transition. And that is my top piece of advice… let others help you! “

Lance’s Advice:
“Finding a job can seem overwhelming, particularly in this economy, which is exactly why military veterans, retirees, and military spouses need to take advantage of the many programs and initiatives designed to assist their transition. For starters, I recommend the following:

  1. Leverage your network. Who do you know that knows someone in the company(ies) you want to work for? Reach out to veterans that completed a successful transition; they want to help you.
  2. Attend the Transition Assistance Program (TAP) and take the activities seriously (resume writing, interviewing, financial planning, etc.). Learn about the resources available and use them. Military spouses should leverage the Military Spouse Employment Partnership (MSEP).
  3. Take time to think about what you really want to do. What are you passionate about? Most military personnel took the next job their detailer assigned them. That is not the case as you transition from the service. For example, do you want to lead teams, or do you want to be an individual contributor? Do you want to use your technical expertise, or do you want to teach, coach or train?
  4. Identify your strengths. Employers value the leadership, discipline, flexibility, teamwork, and countless other skills veterans embody; use these to your advantage.
  5. Identify companies that share your values and have a purpose you embrace. Military Friendly companies are a great place to start.

Good luck!”

Thank you Alicia, Mike and Lance for your time, advice and service to our country!

Understanding SEO for Job Postings

Monday, July 30th, 2012

SEO or search engine optimization is not just a buzzword or fad that’s changing at any point in time. The facts are that almost every computer user frequents either Google or Bing each day, and if your websites are not being properly optimized and indexed you could be missing out on valuable traffic. Think of search engines this way: there are two stores in each city that almost everyone goes to, Wal-Mart and Target. Consider Google and Bing those two stores or online destinations. Therefore if you have a product that you want to make easily accessible to consumers you would pursue the channels that allow you to display your product in the Wal-Mart and Target inventory.

As a recruiter, your jobs are your products and Google and Bing are your Wal-Mart and Target stores. Getting your products onto the shelves of these big retailers is a very time consuming and arduous task, often times requiring a lot of investment in resources, time and money. The same can be said for ensuring your jobs are seen on Google and Bing. However, there are some free “tricks” you have at your disposal and those include SEO.

What is SEO and Why is it Important for Job Postings?

If SEO is a relatively new term to you, it’s a fairly simple concept to understand. SEO directly correlates with how your site ranks on search engines. Several different techniques can be used to make your web pages more relevant and easily read by search engine bots. Some of the most popularly used techniques include:

  • Keyword Analysis: by using Google’s keyword tool[1]* you can decipher which keywords are most relevant to what job seekers are searching for, helping you eliminate company jargon that may be only understandable internally. This tool can be especially helpful when your recruiting efforts are focusing in on location or specific job offering. For example, if your company is recruiting salespeople for open positions in Indianapolis, you would turn to Google’s keyword tool and type in the variation you were going to include in your description, ‘Indianapolis sales jobs’ perhaps, to see what the total search volume and related terms were so you could optimize your text to include the keywords that have a higher search volume.
  • SEO Content Generation: quality content engages your job seeker and helps increase the relevance of your site when it comes to search engine rankings. Therefore, when trying to generate content for your website, keep the previously searched keywords in mind to help you further advance your website. For example, Member company Sodexo, Inc. generates fresh content in their company blog through a variety of different blogging topics pertinent to the outreach goals of company. This constant dedication to updating blogs and content within the site helps keep search engines coming back to their pages for reindexing.
  • Interlinking or “Link Juice”: by interlinking pages within your site, or your .JOBS microsite with your corporate career site, you can help build relevance for your microsite and help search engines easily navigate or “crawl” your site. Interlinking, in a nutshell builds PageRank and helps your pages rise in the rankings. Member company Ryder practices this SEO technique by interlinking their military career page with their .JOBS veterans microsite, http://ryder-veterans.jobs and vice versa. This interlinking helps give their .JOBS microsite a higher PageRank and also allows search engines to see a direct connection between the two.
  • User Experience: Some things just go hand-in-hand and SEO and user experience are two of those things. Often times on the web, job seekers are bombarded with many different on-page options for navigating around their sites. However, SEO can help user experience by cutting down on the on-page links, which help to create a better usability and improved search results. The overall goal would be to place navigation buttons or links in areas that are where job seekers easily can find them which facilitates faster navigation and fewer clicks.

As an Association, DirectEmployers has made a conscious effort to include these SEO techniques into each of our websites, from .JOBS to the National Labor Exchange site US.jobs. Understanding how search engine’s view pages can help you maximize your online efforts. With little tweaks here and there, your jobs can potentially become more indexable by search engines and optimized for the results you are looking for. Take Member company IHG for example, who has seen an increase of 96% in visits and 108% increase in apply conversions. To see more examples of how companies have benefited from having a search engine optimized platform visit http://casestudy.jobs.

To learn more about setting up a microsite, contact Chris Johnson at cjohnson@directemployers.org.

[1] Update: Since the post was originally published, the Google Keyword Tool has been replaced by the Google Keyword Planner. To access this tool, you will need to create a Google AdWords account. To learn more, check out this excellent Google Keyword Planner Guide from Razor Social.

The Employment Line, Episode 7: College Recruiting Tips from NACE, 10,000 Jobs Challenge & 2012 Annual Conference Date

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

In this episode:

Suggestions for college recruiting efforts from NACE, 10,000 Jobs Challenge for veterans and military spouses, and the 2012 Annual Meeting & Conference

Keeping you connected, with no waiting—The Employment Line. Thank you for watching.

The Employment Line is brought to you by DirectEmployers, a non-profit association of global employers, which provides simple, sophisticated solutions for Human Resources and Recruitment.

Honored for Commitment to Military Spouses and Veterans Seeking Employment

Wednesday, February 1st, 2012

DirectEmployers Association’s Executive Director Honored for Dedication to Helping Military Families and Veterans Reenter the Workforce

INDIANAPOLIS, February 1, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Now, more than ever, it’s important to recognize those who have assisted the growing number of military spouses and veterans alike transition back into the civilian workforce. Bill Warren, Executive Director of DirectEmployers Association, was honored for just that.

In a ceremony held at the Pentagon, the Military Spouse Corporate Career Network (MSCCN) presented Warren with The Military to Civilian Jobs Network Alliance Award. Deborah Kloeppel, President and CEO of MSCCN states, “We are pleased to honor Mr. Warren for his valuable contribution in helping members and spouses of the National Guard and Reserve Families reenter the workforce after these individuals have selflessly served their country.”

The MSCCN and DirectEmployers Association created a partnership in August of 2010 due to the mutual respect for helping both spouses of service men and veterans reenter the workforce. DirectEmployers Association provides access to over 900,000 vetted jobs at no cost to the largest job bank for military spouses in the country at US.jobs.

As a former U.S. Army veteran, Warren and DirectEmployers Association understand the need for an organization like MSCCN that provide job-readiness services to transitioning military, related families, and their caregivers. Warren accepted the award with gratitude saying, “Military spouses and returning service members bring unique skills and experience to the civilian workforce. They have learned to work side by side with individuals regardless of race, gender, geographic origin, 
ethnic background, religion and economic status. They
have the sensitivity to cooperate with many different types of individuals providing employers a competitive advantage globally.”

About Military Spouse Corporate Career Network

The Military Spouse Corporate Career Network is a nonprofit organization that focuses on furthering employment opportunities for military spouses, transitioning military, veterans, war wounded, and caregivers of war wounded. The MSCCN is located all across the country near military bases helping servicemen and their spouses find employment after duty.

About DirectEmployers Association

DirectEmployers Association is a nonprofit HR consortium of leading global employers formed to improve labor market efficiency through the sharing of best practices, research and the development of technology. .JOBS Career Microsites are one of the many technologies that DirectEmployers Association provides to member employers. For more information on DirectEmployers Association, visit http://directemployers.org.

MEDIA CONTACT: Nancy Holland, Vice President of Marketing, DirectEmployers Association, +1-317-874-9022, nancy@directemployers.org