Building a Diverse, Inclusive, Veteran-Friendly Workforce

The Symphony Talent Team
June 20 ․ 5 min read

Symphony Talent - Veteran and Military Talent Diversity

Diversity and inclusion are foundational to creating a thriving work culture that makes everyone feel welcome. A recent McKinsey study found companies with a lack of diversity are more likely to underperform in profitability by 29 percent compared to diverse, inclusive industry peers. Ultimately, diverse, inclusive business practices increase your organization’s bottom line — varied perspectives make for better products and, by virtue, happier customers.

To achieve a diverse, inclusive workplace, you need to hire with gender, race, abilities and sexual orientation in mind, for sure. Don’t forget, though, that veterans are also important to the labor market as well — in no small part because of their skills and diversity of thought. Among the 370,000 unemployed veterans in 2017, 59 percent were age 25 to 54, 37 percent were age 55 and over, and 4 percent were age 18 to 24. Needless to say, that’s a crucial talent pool. In a tight labor market, it’s harder than ever to find right-fit candidates who are values-driven, loyal and hardworking. Veterans are natural leaders, with expertise that benefits fast-paced, dynamic organizations in many ways.

But how do you get your brand in front of them? How do you engage them? And how do you nurture them through to hire?

To tap into this talent pool, consider conducting targeted recruiting from veteran training programs, and incorporate a talent marketing strategy that takes their unique circumstances into account. That’s less difficult than you might think. Remember that the business landscape is changing rapidly — it’s agile organizations that stay competitive these days. Veterans are a group that regularly dealt with transition and change. As a result, they understand flexibility and know how to work collaboratively.

As part of your diversity recruiting strategy, consider supporting veteran recruitment efforts with a targeted microsite that effectively markets your brand to skilled veteran candidates. Then, speak to them — and their values — directly, using technology and creative to do it. Bradley Rager, Employer Brand Manager from Highmark Health, a national health and wellness organization with more than 40,000 employees, shared in a recent webinar the story of how Highmark Health developed and implemented a strategy for recruiting military talent, with a focus on the Pittsburgh market. From a dedicated microsite featuring successful “transitioners” to encouraging participation in an active Talent Community, Highmark was able to successfully reach out to this audience and achieve higher levels of engagement and conversion.

The best career sites align civilian jobs with the skills veterans gained while serving in the military. That’s where Google Cloud Talent Solution’s military skills translator comes in. With it, users search by U.S. military occupational specialty code (MOS, AFSC, or NEC) — they simply input their code and Google Cloud Talent Solution automatically return a list of civilian jobs that best coincide with expertise. The tool also supports military rank codes — for example, “11A” for Infantry Officer and “11B” for Infantryman.

Couple that tool with a seamless, personalized candidate experience that reflects and compellingly conveys your employer brand, and you’re headed down the right path. By enlisting an omnichannel Military Hiring Talent Solution that meets veterans where they’re at, you can cull valuable data and remarket to them in a way that resonates.

They’re potential candidates who possess qualities like perseverance, creative problem solving and the ability to work independently, as well as the ability to build and thrive in high-performing teams. These are assets to any organization — not to mention the colleagues who veterans work alongside.