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The Recruitment Marketing Best Practice Series highlights tips and real-world examples from the 13 practices researched in the SmashFly Recruitment Marketing Report Card Report Card for the 2015 Fortune 500.


Why is it a best practice?

Candidates with military experience have immense potential to add value to your organization. They understand discipline and hard work and many have been trained in technical or leadership roles. They are also highly adaptable and quick learners. But it’s true that recruiters have a hard time understanding how to place veterans into civilian organizations. The more information you can learn from them, the more you will learn about how to place them. That starts with communicating!

Attracting transitioning military and veterans to your organization can be achieved by providing military-specific messaging and resources on your career site.

35% of the Fortune 500 message directly to transitioning military and veterans. BUT, 62% and 67% respectively have diversity and campus/intern initiatives. That’s nearly double the amount of companies. If you’re looking for technical skills, strong leadership or management and/or security clearance, you’re missing a big and invested audience in veterans. Crafting messaging to them now will get you ahead of many organizations who may not yet be targeting this group.


How should I use it?

Speaking directly to veterans with a dedicated landing page or microsite can help you engage this specific audience and learn more about them. The more information you can get from them on their interests and skills and the more questions you can answer for them will help your organization better find the right role for them ― and you. Here are a few things to consider:

  1. They’re probably searching organizations who are implementing veteran initiatives first. As much as your recruiters may feel uneducated on what veterans have accomplished in their military past, these candidates may also feel overwhelmed in searching for a career in civilian organizations. When they visit your career site, you want them to know you’re thinking about their skills and service in a specific way. Make it easy for them to find information with a Military or Veterans page; use a call-to-action on the homepage or feature in your navigation; share how you’ve helped other veterans grow in your organization; and list relevant jobs that fit their types of skills.
  2. Find a way to continue the conversation. This is where talent communities and talent networks come into play. Lockheed Martin uses their Military Connect group to share resources, answer questions and allow veterans to discuss amongst themselves tips and experiences in the civilian career world. They also encourage transitioning military and veterans to join their talent network, through which they can send them relevant content and jobs based on their preferences, as well as learn more about what they are interested in and consuming.
  3. Share your purpose. Use your employer brand, social media, customer testimonials and employee stories to build a vision around your organization’s purpose. How have you helped veteran employees develop their skills and career in your organization? How are key projects helping to make a difference? What results have your customers or end users seen due to your exceptional work and team? Veterans have a strong sense of duty and determination. Try to show, not tell, how your organization can help them continue that in their new career.


Who is doing it?

We highlighted Home Depot in the SmashFly Recruitment Marketing Report Card for the 2015 Fortune 500 for their exceptional veteran initiative. The company is on a mission to hire 55,000 veterans by the end of 2015 and has a dynamic, engaging microsite dedicated to the initiative. The Home Depot uses bold, relevant imagery and offers simple navigation for information on their commitment and goals.

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The Home Depot highlights its past honors of being named a Military-Friendly Employer, as well as its successes of already hiring thousands of veterans. What makes this section unique is its Military Career Search tool, which helps candidates translate their military skills into positions at The Home Depot. This can help bridge the gap between military and civilian jobs and prompts military candidates to click through to learn more about open jobs.

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The Home Depot does a great job of letting their involvement in the military community speak for itself, supporting military housing, offering scholarships for military spouses and featuring testimonials from current veteran employees. Job well done!

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