Veteran Offers Advice for Job Hunters


A veteran's advice on obtaining defense jobs

An outgoing sailor from the U.S. Navy in 2008 who was hard pressed to find a job lucked out and found employment after toiling for some time in the hunt during a rough economic patch, according to a column he wrote in The Westminster Patch.

T.J. Mayotte capitalized on the "military career transition service," which aided his preparation for interviews, crafting a good resume and ended up with a one-day session of 10 interviews. But the rough economic times prompted companies to implement hiring freezes and additional obstacles arose as he sought defense jobs, spurring him to explore additional avenues to score gainful employment with his skill set.

His advice includes capitalizing on all available resources and not to narrowcast. Making the transition from serving in the military to civilian life will provide the opportunity to view additional opportunities. Rather than focusing on one job, hunters should get settled and keep their eyes open for additional opportunities.

He also advises considering the benefits of contracting, which often represents a key opportunity to capitalize on basic skills. He landed at a defense company and noted it is a strong work site for vets like himself due to finding like-minded colleagues.

Contracting with defense companies also represents a chance to begin understanding corporate America, which represents the terrain between serving in the U.S. Department of Defense and the life of a civilian. He expressed strong confidence that defense contracting companies should be more than happy to capitalize on these skills very quickly.

Another piece of advice is to keep options open in addition to federal job opportunities.

Exploring the veteran's community and what it has to offer is an important avenue to consider as well, Mayotte advises. Many of them have advocacy organizations that can be put into motion for various campaigns such as upgrading healthcare for veterans and disseminating important information.

He also advises returning to school under the GI Bill, noting participants get paid to pursue academic challenges.

The Wall Street Journal reports U.S. troops returning stateside from Iraq and Afghanistan last year amounted to almost 150,000 while the first two months of this year saw 35,000 return from Afghanistan, according to information provided by the U.S. Defense Department.

One key topic for the returning troops is personal finances, which underscores the importance of acquiring work.