Put America’s Best To Work For You

Because it’s right. Because it’s smart.

Russell Christiana

First Sergeant Russell Christiana's U.S. Army Reserve 99th RRC unit was activated in January 2005. He finished his tour of duty in Afghanistan in April 2006 and returned to his job as territory manager for Praxair Distribution Inc.

According to a recent Department of Defense demographic survey, over 3.4 million people constitute the American Armed Forces. Over 1.4 million of these personnel are active duty. As members of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard, they form one of the most highly trained, highly motivated military forces in our nation’s history. When these men and women return home and become civilian employees, they will bring the same traits—a willingness to work, an ability to get along with all kinds of people, and a sense of discipline—to the civilian work force.

Job Seeker Profile
Compared to the civilian work force, these individuals are highly educated and trained. All separating service members have received military training in their areas of expertise equal to hundreds of thousands of dollars in the private sector economy. These highly trained, dedicated individuals will be looking to start a second career at the peak of their productive lives. As civilians, these former service members will provide employers with the opportunity to hire top-notch professionals in virtually every job category—equipment repair, electronics, computer programming, communications, accounting and finance, heavy equipment operations and many more. Tens of thousands will have hands-on experience as work-group leaders and supervisors. Collectively, these individuals form a talent pool of tremendous dimensions and are a strong resource for your workplace.

Former Military Bring Discipline and Dedication to GAWDA Member Companies
Drew Weiss, director of recruitment and retention for Airgas, Inc. (Radnor, PA), has been recruiting from the military for the past four years. Having worked in the defense industry, Weiss knew the responsible and hard-working qualities former service people could bring to the gases and welding industry. “We are getting great people with hands-on experience, mostly junior military officers whom we slot into operations positions,” Weiss explains. “The level of training these individuals receive in the military serves them well when handling personnel and equipment in the civilian industry.”

Weiss points to Roger Hodges, a former Army captain in charge of field artillery and transportation. “Soon after Roger was hired for a position in the logistics department of one of our branches in the Gulf States region, Hurricane Katrina hit. He was instrumental in the effectiveness of our response to the disaster. One of the things he did was implement a new GPS system which helped get our trucks around.”

Patrick Fitzsimmons

Middlesex Branch Manager Sergeant First Class Patrick Fitzsimmons watches for victory in Iraq.

BOC Gases (Murray Hill, NJ) has no formal military recruiting policy, but some job requirements often fit well with former military personnel. Kristina Schurr, BOC public relations manager, explains: “Those positions are typically found in BOC’s operations and distribution functions or customer engineering services, i.e., running our air separation and carbon dioxide plants, transporting products by rail and truck to our customers, installing bulk tanks at our customer locations and servicing those tanks.”

Schurr says the use of both public and private sector recruiting firms has proven to be beneficial when searching for employees. “We have gone through Cameron Brooks, a large military recruiting firm, as well as private firms to identify individuals who have the talent and abilities we are seeking.” About 10 percent of BOC’s employees in North America have military backgrounds, an average typical for most large industrial companies.

For Airgas, Inc. and BOC Gases, military personnel have proven to be a successful resource. Put America’s best to work for you. Grab the phone book or go online to find the number for your local military personnel office. Take advantage of the outplacement programs that are a win-win situation for employers and employees.

Resources for Hiring from the Armed Forces
From the armed services, employers have access to a vast pool of highly qualified employees. Military personnel are highly trained, and in every job category, at every experience level, they bring discipline and dedication to the job. They are the skilled and motivated workers whom employers are seeking. There are a number of organizations that find jobs for military personnel wishing to enter the corporate workforce. Below are three of them that are ready and willing to help you tap into this massive and skilled talent pool.

Bradley-Morris, Inc. — A military-focused placement firm headquartered in Atlanta and founded in 1991 by Shaun Bradley, a distinguished former Navy officer. So far, the organization has placed over 10,000 military service people in civilian jobs. Bradley concentrates on helping both officers and enlisted recruits find jobs appropriate to their skills and interests. Says Bradley, “We have a large pool of candidate recruiters who understand the environment these job-seekers are coming from and help them to develop a résumé and conduct interviews.”

Doug Taylor

Middlesex Inside Sales Rep Doug Taylor served as a Naval Petty Officer Third Class in Desert Storm.

Instead of focusing on catering to a specific industry, the agency focuses on a certain type of candidate who can go into any industry and be successful. “The only companies that do not make military recruits their top priority are the companies that haven’t interviewed them,” Bradley says. “Military people bring the whole package to the table: work ethic, integrity, team skills and adaptability that make them valuable additions to any civilian company.”

The service is free for military personnel; client companies interview candidates for free as well, and then pay a standard contingency fee if they make a hire. Bradley-Morris holds several yearly hiring conferences across the country for companies interested in recruiting military people. Representatives can be contacted through the company Web site at www.bradley-morris.com or at 800-330-4950.

MOAA — The military has several organizations focused on finding civilian positions for returning and retiring service people. The Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) places officers through The Officer Placement Service (TOPS), a program that matches service people with appropriate companies with which to begin a second career.

Troy Hill

Checking out the new equipment, Welsco's VP of Sales Troy Hill (left) gets the job done at Balad Air Base in Iraq.

“The bottom line,” says TOPS Representative Colonel Marv Harris, “is that there really is no cost to the potential employer, who gets a well-trained, good employee.” TOPS has placed individuals into some very non-traditional career fields, like zoo keeping. Says Harris, “When you’ve done A, B, C all your life, why not try D, E, and F?” One former general is now a male model in Paris.

The service is free for prospective employers. The required membership for former military employees is $24 a year. Companies can contact MOAA by visiting www.moaa.org or calling 703-549-2311.

Operation Transition — Defense Outplacement Referral System (DORS) is a national résumé registry and referral network established to help separating Department of Defense personnel transition into civilian life. Through a program called Operation Transition, DORS provides private and public sector employers immediate access to résumés from transitioning military personnel and federal civilian employees (and their spouses). DORS is uniquely job/qualification specific. This service is available to employers at no cost.

Call 800-727-3677 or visit the Defense Manpower Data Center/Operation Transition Web site at www.dmdc.osd.mil/dors.

Gases and Welding Distributors Association