Resume Writing and Social Networking Tips for Veteran Job Seekers

Forward March Inc. has posted some new positions on our website and more are coming in January! Make sure to check them out here…

We thought, with all these new positions coming on line in the next 30 days, we would post a three part series we released earlier in the year to help veterans and transitioning military in the areas of resumes, interviewing, social media and a more.This information is actually really helpful to anyone from any background when they are going through the job searching process so feel free to share it with anyone you know may be benefitted by the info in these articles.

tips for resumes and interviews

Part two of three in our continuing series on veteran and transitioning military employment preparation.

Most people have social media pages. No matter how private you “think” your social media page is remember this… it’s not! Potential employers regularly review social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and others. This is common practice and is NOT a practice just reserved for potential employees who will need background checks.

If your social media page(s) contain images, videos, music, or speech that causes employers to think you are not a good candidate it can prevent you from getting an interview or landing the job. Many employees have found that their social media has been the reason for their termination.

Here are some rules that will keep you from having issues with your social media:

  • Remove any images, videos, or other content that contains vulgarity.
  • Remove images or other content that contains sexual content.
  • Remove content that contains alcohol or drug use.
  • Remove images containing violence, graphic images of war/violence/gore/etc

Its pretty easy, though possibly time consuming, to clean up a social media site with the above guidelines. However, its much harder to clean up your comments on posts you or others in your network or in the public have posted. It may be advisable to close your social media account(s) weeks or even a month before you begin sending out your resume and networking.

Some brutally honest advice you may not want to hear – Sometimes it’s better to close down your social media page than to try to clean it up. You will have to assess the difficulty and time invested in cleaning up a page vs. shutting it down and starting a new page at a later date. Should you decide to close down your social media page you have to remember that it takes time. Facebook, for instance, can take weeks to close your page down.

LinkedIn profiles are difficult to delete; that has to be done by LinkedIn at your request. It usually (at the time of this article) takes about two days to get your profile deleted. LinkedIn is a professional social media outlet for professional networking. Follow these guidelines for keeping your LinkedIn page in a favorable light.

Do not post entries or posts that contain vulgarity, sexually explicit remarks, or potentially political or religious inflammatory remarks. In a nut-shell follow the same rules posted above for Facebook. Additionally it is important to remember to keep your LikedIn content professional, and relevant to your professional career.

Your LinkedIn photo, which it is HIGHLY suggested that you have, should be professional. A clear, crisp headshot that has a relatively solid background is preferable. If your career direction is one where a suit and tie would be expected even part of the time then have your photo taken with a suit and tie. For both men and women, the photo should be business dress as opposed to business casual. If your career is one where dressing business casual is not required it is a good rule of thumb to go ahead and have your photo taken with business casual attire. Refrain from “goofy” faces, hand gestures, and most of all using objects, logos, pets, animals, movie images, etc. Only use your portrait, if you do not use a portrait then leave the image blank.

Ultimately it is important to be your self on social media, however, you should always temper that with professionalism as it is not just your “friends” who are looking at your social media posts. Remember this rule of thumb; “Nothing you post on the web is private”.

For further guidance on how to edit or delete social media entries or even delete accounts refer to the instructions on the social media sites themselves. Sites like Facebook and LinkedIn have excellent instructions on how to make these things happen and with a little time and attention you can “tune up” your social media and have it ready for your next step in getting your dream career.

~ Article by Tobin Pilotte, Directer of Marketing and Technology for Forward March Inc. 

Employment Preparation Part 1 of 3

Forward March Inc. has posted some new positions on our website and more are coming in January! Make sure to check them out here…

We thought, with all these new positions coming on line in the next 30 days, we would post a three part series we released earlier in the year to help veterans and transitioning military in the areas of resumes, interviewing, social media and a more.This information is actually really helpful to anyone from any background when they are going through the job searching process so feel free to share it with anyone you know may be benefitted by the info in these articles.

Military and Veteran Employment Preparation – Part 1 of 3

 resume tips

Landing a career as opposed to a job is what most every transitioning military person or military veteran desires. There are countless websites, books and other instructional resources that can help with figuring out what you want to do for a career, how to get an interview in your chosen profession, career networking, and how to land that dream job. Today’s post is not intended to be comprehensive but rather a guide for getting started once you have an idea of what you want to do for a career.

120314-A-DQ783-028“This seems like a lot of work” – Just remember, battles are frequently won or lost on the quality of intel. Your job search is no different. The more intel work you do, the more background knowledge you have of your desired position(s) and potential employer(s), the better you will do. Know your industry to the best of your ability through research. Practice being conversant about your field, your desired job, and about your desired employer in order to get the most out of your interview. 

Part I: Interview or Job Fair Preparation: 

Use a military skills translator and find the jobs that your skills translate to in the civilian world. Remember that these are a rough guide and not an exhaustive list. Many times your skills can translate to jobs or positions that are not seemingly aligned. This is where it is also important for you to do some research to see what it is you want to do job-wise. Research the jobs you want, the employers, and the job descriptions. Translate your experience to match where applicable.

VA Translator

Military.com Translator

Market yourself as broadly as possible – If you are an aircraft mechanic and only want to interview for aircraft mechanic jobs then market yourself very specifically in just that skillset. However, if you want to look at other possibilities in mechanics from auto mechanics to wind turbine mechanics to oilfield mechanics then be more broad with how you market your skills within mechanics. Highlight mechanics related skills that translate across several disciplines.

When you are preparing for a job fair and you know there will be a variety of employers, make sure to have several resumes in different formats that are industry specific. You can also have resumes on hand that are very specific to your ideal job on hand in case you are leaning to a particular specific position. HINT: keep each resume kind in a file folder that is clearly labeled so that you can quickly and easily access them when moving from employer to employer.

Resume Format – Know the correct format for your particular industry. There are on-line resources that give plenty of examples of resumes; focus more on the examples for your particular industry. For instance, an engineering firm wants a conservative resume, a graphic design firm wants something with creative flair. However, if you are applying for a government contracting position with a company such as Lockheed Martin or Boeing they will most likely have a format they want you to put your resume into. Check out this link for some industry specific examples:

Monster Resume Examples

Network, Network, Network – Use LinkedIn, make your profile as neat and professional as possible. Use the above pointers, such as being brief but concise.

Look for and maintain network connections with people in the fields you are looking at going into. Network with people doing the work you want to do. Do not pass up opportunities to meet with these connections in person. Take concrete steps to meet these connections, especially in person. When reaching out to a potential connection on the internet, especially on LinkedIn make sure to make your message personal, do not use the default message.

As a veteran you are given a year of LinkedIn pro. Make that happen. (Offer is good as of the writing of this article)

In your network connections make sure you have a few trusted professional connections that can review your resume, and your LinkedIn page to make sure that they are as professional as possible.

Those trusted mentors are good resources for practicing your interviewing skills with.

Network with professional organizations, groups, and clubs that have people in your industry as members.

Dress to Impress – When interviewing put your best foot forward with regards to your appearance. When interviewing for a job it is important to go with business dress, a suit or at minimum; slacks, button down shirt, and a tie. Vests can be worn as well but try to keep your overall appearance conservative. That bright red silk shirt might be great but keep it for another occasion. If you need to appear in uniform ensure that your uniform is impeccable. ACUs are never acceptable for an interview or when meeting employers at a job fair. The exception to this would be if there is a job/career fair that is brought to your (military) location during duty hours and it is understood that everyone will be in ACUs.

These tips and suggestions should help you move toward landing the job you are looking for and starting on an exciting new career.

Check out the Tools and Resources page on our website for valuable links to help in your veteran job search or your military transition. 

Make sure you bookmark this site and come back for parts 2 and 3 where we will continue with social media and interview tips and suggestions.

~ Article by Tobin Pilotte, Directer of Marketing and Technology for Forward March Inc. 

Hiring Veterans, Serving Those Who Served

hiringveteransservingthosewhoserved

Did you hear the one about the kid who went to church one Sunday and asked the pastor, “Why are all those names on the wall of the church?” The pastor replied, “Those names are members of the church who died in the service.” The kid then asked, “Which one, the morning or afternoon service?”

As the child of a disabled veteran and a 24 year Army Veteran myself, I have spent my life around those outstanding Americans who have served their country. The key word here is SERVED. In fact, baby boomers, generally refer to the military as “the service”, but unfortunately we don’t hear that phrase much anymore. With less than 1% of the country serving in the military at any one time, it understandable that “service” has fallen from our collective psyche.

veterans minoritySo what does this mean for our veterans? For starters, about 90% of the U.S. population are non-veterans. Furthermore, only about 20% of the prime enlistment age of 17-21 are even eligible for service and that number continues to grow. While the nation “Supports Our Troops”, the overall population just does not understand us.

Since a majority of the population does not understand what it means to serve in the military, the same applies to civilian recruiters and hiring managers. Although strides have been made in veteran unemployment, the number of unemployed veterans remains at about 722,000. With a continued drawdown of the military, with the Army alone losing 70-90K in 2015, much work still needs to be done to find veterans gainful careers.

Our veterans have already fulfilled their commitment to our nation selflessly serving to keep our country safe. Now it’s corporate America and small business’ turn to serve those who served.   Here are five practices to help your organization attract and hire veterans.

  1. Develop a solid military recruiting strategy. Developing a strategy begins with the company’s vision. This should be a top down driven initiative with specific, measurable, and achievable goals that the entire organization understands. Once a plan is made, recruiters and hiring managers must then be trained and resourced to execute the plan. Furthermore, performance reviews should be tied to veteran hiring performance to ensure continued success.
  1. Leverage existing veteran employees. What better way to attract veterans than engaging current employees who have served. They have not only talked the talk, they have walked the walk. They understand the military transition process and can assist in military skills interpretation and veteran interviewing. The bottom line is this: a brother and sisterhood exists within the veteran population. Veterans who believe in their organization want to share it with others.
  1. Market your organization as the veteran employer of choice. Building your organization’s brand as a veteran friendly company is key to military hiring success. Part of this branding is leveraging current veteran employees and telling their success stories within the company. Create military specific brochures and other military marketing collateral when attending military hiring functions and use veteran employees as recruiters at such events. Create a veteran hiring site on your company webpage. Send veteran applicants a separate email thanking them for their service when they apply. Make veterans feel welcomed before they even step foot in your company.
  1. Get engaged with the military community. In order to find the veteran employee population, your organization must be engaged in the veteran community. Establish partnerships with non-profit veteran organizations such as the American Legion or Veterans of Foreign Wars. Get to know people at local military transition centers and make routine visits to reach out to those leaving military service. Establish relationships with local National Guard and Reserve units. Encourage employees to get involved with volunteer programs supporting veterans.
  2. Don’t forget about military spouses. When developing a veteran recruiting and hiring strategy, do not forget about the military spouse. Although they do not wear the uniform, they possess many skills employers are looking for. Just like the service member, the military spouse is flexible, adaptive to change, conscious of cultural and regional differences, and focused on getting the job done.

As a nation, we owe it to those currently serving and those who served our country in the past, the opportunity to begin new careers after their military obligation is complete. Forward March, Inc., can train your organization to attract, hire, and retain top military talent. We help develop a veteran pipeline and a military hiring strategy for success of both your organization and our nation’s veterans. If your company is committed to hiring those who served, let FMI show you how.

FMI TENANTS LOGO

~ Article written by Jason Caswell, Forward March Inc – Director of Training and Talent Pipeline Services

Holiday Cheer Filled the FMI Offices This Week

RED FRIDAY COPTERS

Its Friday again, so break out those red shirts! R.E.D. Friday is here so remember everyone deployed!

Learn more about RED Fridays:

http://redshirtfridays.org/  

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Support_our_troops

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Support-Our-Troops-Wear-Red-Fridays/188809874489323

weekly roundup 22

Here is the weekly roundup.

We are always moving forward at a high rate of speed here at Forward March Inc.

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Did you catch Richard Abrams at the Hiring Our Heroes job fair? Richard is the Director of Strategic Development for Forward March Inc. You may have seen him on our social media pics in costume as a chef. Well, truth is, that is no costume. Richard is also an accomplished chef and has taken it upon himself to make sure that we eat really well at our FMI events!

Paul

Paul (President of FMI) and Stephanie Volpe wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

This week the folks here at Forward March Inc. got together at Paul Volpe’s home and had our first annual Christmas party. With spouses and children present there was more than enough holiday cheer to go around.

Don

Don Palen (CEO of FMI) and his wife Andrea bringing the festive spirit to our Christmas party.

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And the winner of a great time is… everyone! You just cannot beat getting together with the FMI family!

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Chef Richard and his lovely family enjoying the festive evening.

We also had an amazing first annual Holiday Networking Mixer on Wednesday which you can read about here…

For more pics of this great Christmas party check out our Facebook page! 

Monday we will resume our highly informative article posting. Have a safe weekend!

To learn more about Forward March Inc. click here…

Holiday Networking Mixer Recap

First things first. All the folks here at Forward March Inc. (FMI) would like to extend a huge THANK YOU TO ALL OUR FRIENDS who showed up to our holiday mixer last night. Each and every one of you, like us, have a huge place in your heart for veterans and your presence, fellowship, stories and joy made this event very special!

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FMI would also like to thank everyone for all the donations for St. Pj’s Children’s Home. We are still collecting so contact us anytime before December 19.

Wow, what a great week! There is never down time and its never dull trying to make American industry great through providing veterans with careers. If you ask anyone who works at FMI they will tell you that it’s the best job they have ever had. We are a company of veterans, from diverse backgrounds, that all share the same passion… helping our nation’s greatest treasure, our veterans. Our corporate culture is one that encompasses hard work and dedication but we also never pass up the opportunity to have a great time. We all know that life is short and we share the attitude that we want to make every moment count. These things cannot be summed up better than they were last night at our first annual Holiday Networking Mixer. FMI gathered together to exchange stories, enjoy good food and amazing live music.

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Our company is very honored to have a special relationship with veteran/wounded warrior/hero/musician/ and all around great guy J.P. Lane. J.P. Lane is a US Army wounded warrior from Green Bay, Wisconsin and is an amazing and up and coming musician so be sure to keep your eye on him in the future.  You can check him out on the web HERE. J.P. provided the live music for our gathering last night. He actually provided so much more from inspiration to entertainment. Make sure you follow FMI on our blog, Facebook, and Linkedin pages to keep up with some amazing things we are hoping to do with J.P. next year through our Forward March Inc. Operation Outreach non profit program. You can read more about our Operation Outreach programs here…

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FMI would like to give a shout out and heart-felt thanks to our neighbor Rob Deering and the Beacon Circle Coffee House and Gallery. Our party was held in our corporate offices and in the Beacon Circle Coffee House next door. You can learn more about the Beacon Circle Coffee House and Gallery which is a part of DMI here…

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To see more of the pics and vids from last night’s party friend us on Facebook here…

If you have pics, share them with us on Facebook!

November 5th Weekly Roundup

Enduring FreedomIts Friday again, so break out those red shirts! R.E.D. Friday is here so remember everyone deployed!

Learn more about RED Fridays:

http://redshirtfridays.org/  

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Support_our_troops

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Support-Our-Troops-Wear-Red-Fridays/188809874489323

weekly roundup 22

Here is the weekly roundup.

Its been yet another busy week for us here at Forward March Inc. but we have put together some links for you to check out.

For Businesses:

We would encourage everyone who is even remotely entertaining the idea of hiring veterans to read the latest pro-veteran hiring article in Forbes magazine.

Why Every Company Should Consider Hiring Veterans: It Delivers Big Business Value 

Courtney Billington, the author of this article, makes some very good points on veteran hiring for businesses. Just read this section to get a feel for what Billington says veterans can do for your organization.

Across industries, we need to challenge ourselves to translate the military experience to the corporate environment. There is a level of education, awareness, and openness needed to better understand the value of veterans and the skills they bring. Consider a few examples:

  • “Distributed, accounted for, and transported mission critical equipment and supplies to over 20,000 personnel.” Now there’s someone who understands project and supply chain management!
  • “Taught Unit Operations personnel fire mission processing and single-channel ground-to-air radio system digital and voice communications.” I think this person could handle training corporate personnel on technical matters or could manage our information technology projects.
  • “Generated $2.3 million in savings, exceeding original objective of $500K, through management of 100+ high value commodities.” Financial acumen with an appreciation of business impact? No problem there!

For Veterans and Transitioning Military:

ATA sets 100,000-veteran, two-year hiring goal for US trucking 

Veterans Put Their Skills on the Line at Toyota Texas

5 Fortune 500 companies transforming the job market for veterans

Howard Schultz and Starbucks are trying to shift how veterans are hired

More than 30 employers, all hiring, seek out veterans

Recruit Military also has a nice list of veteran job fairs which you can find here… 

As always, if you hear of veteran hiring opportunities let us know and we will post them.

Veteran Employment Opportunity

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CERTIFICATE FOR APARTMENT MAINTENANCE TECHNICIAN TRAINING

JANUARY 20 – FEBRUARY 6, 2015

GOODWILL GOOD CAREERS ACADEMY 12332
“IH-10 WEST AT DE ZAVALA

Seminar hours: 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

For information on how to apply for this opportunity call 210/924-8581 (ext. 5907).

Happy Birthday to the Civil Air Patrol

Civil_Air_Patrol_sealHappy Birthday to the Civil Air Patrol. In the late 1930s, more than 150,000 volunteers with a love for aviation argued for an organization to put their planes and flying skills to use in defense of their country.  As a result, the Civil Air Patrol was born one week prior to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Read More Here….

Hire a Master Sergeant instead of Master’s Degree; Bringing Senior Military Leaders into your Organization

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Hiring decisions are not always easy especially for your leadership positions. A good recruiter or hiring manager is going to screen all applicants looking for the best candidate for the job. Often times, a graduate degree is the preferred criteria, but is there a better way to find potential leaders and managers for your organization? Have you considered Senior Military Noncommissioned Officers to fill critical leader position?

Before we continue, let’s pause for a brief military history lesson. Prior to 1958, the highest enlisted pay grade across the U.S. military was E-7. On June 1, 1958, under an Amendment to the Career Compensation Act of 1949, the pay grades of E-8 and E-9 were added to the military rank structure. At the time, these pay grades were known as “Super Grades”. This is also the reason the Air Force does not have Warrant Officers, but that’s a story for another time.

Iraqi FreedomThe fact that these new pay grades were referred to as “Super Grades” was no accident. The men and women who attained those ranks were the top leaders in their respective service branch.  Their leadership was tried and tested over a decade or more and they continued to remain at the top of their game. The attributes of those pioneering E-8 and E-9s still exist in the senior military leaders of today.

Here is a list of the “Super Grades” you might see on a resume:

METAL ARMY SEALArmy

E-8      Master Sergeant/First Sergeant

E-9      Sergeant Major/Command Sergeant Major

METAL NAVY SEALMETAL COAST GUARD SEALNavy/Coast Guard

E-8      Senior Chief Petty Officer

E-9      Master Chief Petty Officer/Command Master Chief

METAL AIRFORCE SEALAir Force

E-8      Senior Master Sergeant/First Sergeant

E-9      Chief Master Sergeant/Command Chief Master Sergeant

METAL MARINE CORPS SEALMarine Corps

E-8      Master Sergeant/First Sergeant

E-9      Master Gunnery Sergeant/Sergeant Major





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So why should you consider hiring a Master Sergeant as opposed to a Master’s Degree? Here are the top 10 reasons for hiring a tried, tested, and proven senior military leader.

  1. A senior NCO has been leading employees for 15-20 plus years. It one thing to ask an employee to load boxes on a truck, it another thing all together motivating people to carry out a mission in a life or death situation.
  2. They get the job done on time, to standard, and on budget. In the days of growing military budget cuts, senior NCOs know how to do more with less without sacrificing organizational effectiveness.
  3. For Senior NCOs, safety is second nature. They have an ingrained respect for policies and procedures.
  4. The have a cultural understanding that most can only imagine. How many new MBAs have lived in Germany, Korea, or Italy? How many MBAs have broken bread with Afghan tribal leaders or guarded a U.S. Embassy?
  5. Senior NCOs are great planners and problem solvers. They routinely apply the Military Decision Making Process (MDMP) weighing the best course of action to accomplish a mission.
  6. They are experts at teaching, coaching, mentoring, and counseling subordinates. They are expert trainers who have dedicated their lives to serving and developing others.
  7. Senior NCOs always present a first class image. They are consummate professionals who will represent themselves and your organization in the highest esteem.
  8. Senior NCOs take responsibility for their actions. They hold themselves accountable for the successes and failures of their team. They learn from their mistakes and they exploit the strengths of themselves and their organization.
  9. There is a huge cost saving for organizations that hire a veteran from just the VOW Act alone. Furthermore, veterans statistically take fewer sick days and every retired military member have their own health and dental coverage taken care of. Cha Ching!
  10. Surprisingly, a majority of Senior Noncommissioned Officers have a master’s degree. By hiring a senior military leader, you can get the best of both worlds.

Today’s military men and women are of the highest caliber in US history with regards to training, leadership development, and their varied skill sets. Our military is the best in the world because of exceptional senior leaders.

FMI LOGO WITH STEEL MIL SEALS

Forward March Inc., has been helping organizations attract, hire, and retain the best Senior NCOs for organizations who want to achieve exceptional things. Let us show you how to bring those outstanding men and women into your organization. Take the next step to move your company from great to Extraordinary!

~ Article written by Jason Caswell, Forward March Inc – Director of Training and Talent Pipeline Services

The Forward March Inc. Weekly Roundup

red friday 12Its Friday again, so break out those red shirts! R.E.D. Friday is here so remember everyone deployed!

Learn more about RED Fridays:

http://redshirtfridays.org/  

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Support_our_troops

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Support-Our-Troops-Wear-Red-Fridays/188809874489323

weekly roundup 22

Here is the weekly roundup.

Its been a busy week for us here at Forward March Inc. with our Camouflage to Corporate conference and Veteran Employment Transition Networking Event, both of which were held here in San Antonio on Monday. Check out the blog here to read more about those events.

Next week our great nation will celebrate Thanksgiving. Here at the Forward March Inc. world headquarters we celebrated a little early with our first annual Thanksgiving get together.

Its like one big (very) happy family when we have an event, no matter where we are.

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Forward March Inc. has a resident chef? Oh yeah! Richard Abrams is whipping up some culinary art for our Thanksgiving pot luck get together.

Its like one big (very) happy family when we have an event, no matter where we are.

JOBS:

If you are looking for a new job then check out these upcoming career fairs for Veterans and Transitioning Military during the month of December. Military.com has done a great job of lining up your hiring fairs, with a list this long there has got to be one near you! Check out the list here.

Recruit Military also has a nice list of veteran job fairs which you can find here… 

As always, if you hear of veteran hiring opportunities let us know and we will post them.

Have an OUTSTANDING weekend!