After seeing this segment (see below) on the Daily Show, my business partner and I decided we wanted to volunteer our time to helping returning vets tailor their resume to reflect civilian terminology . I have searched for and reached out to countless agencies/groups that supposedly help local (Los Angeles) veterans re-enter the workforce, and have not to receive a single reply.

 

We prefer to go local, so we can meet people, but we are also fine with other agencies that are nationally focused. If anyone knows of such an organization where we can donate our time, I would appreciate the information.

 

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-october-24-2012/exclusive---e...

 

Thanks!

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Hi Janine,

I tried, too. Though we don't offer resume services I wanted to be able contribute as well. I didn't really get much response, either. It appears some of the companies and groups involved get grants, etc. so maybe that's their focus vs. actually providing the help. I did go to the Wounded Warriors project website, and other then monetary donations they normally will send back an automated reply to the submission of the volunteer form. Someone finally did get back to me from WWP about 2 months later, I got one resume. Reviewed it, made some changes/suggestions and offered to help further. Sent it all back to the candidate and copied the WWP person. The veteran never returned my call, did email me though and thank me. The WWP person emailed me about a month later asking if I had worked with the veteran. I sent him the correspondence and again offered to help anyone else. No more communication from WWP, so I don't know if there was any issue with what we had done - not that is was much - or they just have enough people assisting? 

Good luck, and I think it's great that you are making the effort.

Janine

Try starting with the VA. (http://www.va.gov/)  They have an initiative to educate Vets on how to translate their skills to civilian terms.  I firmly believe that Employers need the same training.

Good luck and keep the passion going!

Hi Janine, I used to work for the Employment Security Office and spent a few months as a Veteran and Family Employment Rep as well... I feel your pain.

 

As an employer / recruiter trying to help it is very hit and miss. There is so much noise about employers "ignoring" our Veterans when in reality many of us face this same issue - we WANT to help, but no one seems to want to let us in. :) I've finally given up on the "formal" organizations like WorkSource or any DoD funded organizations and started looking at non-profits. I've signed up to be a mentor with a local (Seattle) area organization called Boots to Shoes. I'm hoping to be able to do some good that way.

 

I honestly don't know how to fix this.

Janine,

My experience has been "somewhat" the same, even though I am a veteran (navy) myself. I work with veterans who are referred to me through veterans. I've never worked with a veterans' organization who is in the business of helping veterans. The closest I came to it was writing a series of job advice columns for veterans job boards and, through the grapevine, veterans started opening up and coming to me for help, But, it's been a hot and cold relationship.

My personal feeling is that your experience is part due to the veterans themselves and part due to what they are told in their separation briefings and part due to the contracts that private organizations have with the Federal government.

Let me start with the veterans. Despite email, social media, etc. military service members still live a very insulated life. It's amazing to me now that I was like that years ago when I left the Navy. But, the military has his secret code that more or less distrusts outsiders. Only if you can get over this hump can one really help.

Next. Every separating military service member goes through exit interviews where they are explained about benefits and given basic "career transition" training. I have heard often enough that the veteran community has complained about this training program. And, I have been told by veterans that the trainers discourage veterans to use "outsiders." Of course, this is an allegation. I recall my exit interview and I was told to stick to Veteran counselors. In any event, this already creates resistance in the vets for seeking for help.

Next: The VA. While I think my doctor at the VA is the best doctor I have had in my entire life, as far as the VA's career assistance services, good luck on getting a call back. I think the problem is that the managers involved with the VA's career services are federal employees. So, to get a Federal job, most of the time you need to be a vet. So, it's likely the people who make decisions are veterans and are isolated as well. After all, they want to keep their fitreps high and going to the outside may not be good for their VA careers. This is only a guess on my part. But it is my belief.

Next: Once I did a resume for a Captain. He loved it so much he invited me to a Naval base to give a presentation. I gave a free presentation with a packed room of vets and the common complaint was, "Why aren't we bing told this stuff (who to write an online resume?) I asked the Captain about this complaint. He told me: "turf wars." The people who provided career transition services were Federal contractors. Their revenue was based on the number of military veterans who came to their office. So, they purposely did not want to work with outsiders.

If you can connect with vets one on one, they are eager for help. Unfortunately, there are many roadblocks.

Randall

http://fs5consulting.com

Hi Amber - thanks for your insight as well. I almost wonder if we should just attend one of the veteran job fairs and just network - seems to be the best way we do any aspect of our job! Thanks again!

Amber said:

Hi Janine,

I tried, too. Though we don't offer resume services I wanted to be able contribute as well. I didn't really get much response, either. It appears some of the companies and groups involved get grants, etc. so maybe that's their focus vs. actually providing the help. I did go to the Wounded Warriors project website, and other then monetary donations they normally will send back an automated reply to the submission of the volunteer form. Someone finally did get back to me from WWP about 2 months later, I got one resume. Reviewed it, made some changes/suggestions and offered to help further. Sent it all back to the candidate and copied the WWP person. The veteran never returned my call, did email me though and thank me. The WWP person emailed me about a month later asking if I had worked with the veteran. I sent him the correspondence and again offered to help anyone else. No more communication from WWP, so I don't know if there was any issue with what we had done - not that is was much - or they just have enough people assisting? 

Good luck, and I think it's great that you are making the effort.

Thanks Tom - tried that, and the local VA. Radio Silence. But I'll keep at it! :)
 
Tim Corrigan said:

Janine

Try starting with the VA. (http://www.va.gov/)  They have an initiative to educate Vets on how to translate their skills to civilian terms.  I firmly believe that Employers need the same training.

Good luck and keep the passion going!

Hi Amy - thanks! I will reach out to Boots to Shoes (checked out the site and seems like exactly the right type of organization). Hopefully they know affiliates down my way!
 
Amy Ala said:

Hi Janine, I used to work for the Employment Security Office and spent a few months as a Veteran and Family Employment Rep as well... I feel your pain.

 

As an employer / recruiter trying to help it is very hit and miss. There is so much noise about employers "ignoring" our Veterans when in reality many of us face this same issue - we WANT to help, but no one seems to want to let us in. :) I've finally given up on the "formal" organizations like WorkSource or any DoD funded organizations and started looking at non-profits. I've signed up to be a mentor with a local (Seattle) area organization called Boots to Shoes. I'm hoping to be able to do some good that way.

 

I honestly don't know how to fix this.

Janine, give Katie (below) a call.  I worked with them on some projects and they are excellent...they can help you go in the right direction and they are healthcare/veteran focused and have been for years.

Katie Lenneville
Placement Specialist
1-866-645-2248 ext. 3
1-612-605-2368 (Fax)
Uniformed Services Health Professional Placement
www.USHPP.net

Hi Randall - wow, great insight. It makes perfect sense. So seems like the best bet may be to a) ask Jon Stewart to lead the rally, and I'll start a non-profit in my spare time :) (I know the resistance may be there, but given his reach, it would yield some takers); b) go to the veteran job fairs and just network and see who is open to the help or c) post something on FB telling my friends to keep me in mind if they know a homebound veteran. Thanks for your help!


 
Randall Scasny said:

Janine,

My experience has been "somewhat" the same, even though I am a veteran (navy) myself. I work with veterans who are referred to me through veterans. I've never worked with a veterans' organization who is in the business of helping veterans. The closest I came to it was writing a series of job advice columns for veterans job boards and, through the grapevine, veterans started opening up and coming to me for help, But, it's been a hot and cold relationship.

My personal feeling is that your experience is part due to the veterans themselves and part due to what they are told in their separation briefings and part due to the contracts that private organizations have with the Federal government.

Let me start with the veterans. Despite email, social media, etc. military service members still live a very insulated life. It's amazing to me now that I was like that years ago when I left the Navy. But, the military has his secret code that more or less distrusts outsiders. Only if you can get over this hump can one really help.

Next. Every separating military service member goes through exit interviews where they are explained about benefits and given basic "career transition" training. I have heard often enough that the veteran community has complained about this training program. And, I have been told by veterans that the trainers discourage veterans to use "outsiders." Of course, this is an allegation. I recall my exit interview and I was told to stick to Veteran counselors. In any event, this already creates resistance in the vets for seeking for help.

Next: The VA. While I think my doctor at the VA is the best doctor I have had in my entire life, as far as the VA's career assistance services, good luck on getting a call back. I think the problem is that the managers involved with the VA's career services are federal employees. So, to get a Federal job, most of the time you need to be a vet. So, it's likely the people who make decisions are veterans and are isolated as well. After all, they want to keep their fitreps high and going to the outside may not be good for their VA careers. This is only a guess on my part. But it is my belief.

Next: Once I did a resume for a Captain. He loved it so much he invited me to a Naval base to give a presentation. I gave a free presentation with a packed room of vets and the common complaint was, "Why aren't we bing told this stuff (who to write an online resume?) I asked the Captain about this complaint. He told me: "turf wars." The people who provided career transition services were Federal contractors. Their revenue was based on the number of military veterans who came to their office. So, they purposely did not want to work with outsiders.

If you can connect with vets one on one, they are eager for help. Unfortunately, there are many roadblocks.

Randall

http://fs5consulting.com

Thanks Noel!!

Noel Cocca said:

Janine, give Katie (below) a call.  I worked with them on some projects and they are excellent...they can help you go in the right direction and they are healthcare/veteran focused and have been for years.

Katie Lenneville
Placement Specialist
1-866-645-2248 ext. 3
1-612-605-2368 (Fax)
Uniformed Services Health Professional Placement
www.USHPP.net

You are welcome.  Katie Just joined RecruitingBlogs so you you can find her here also

Hi - I just want to echo what Randall said here - The people who provided career transition services were Federal contractors. Their revenue was based on the number of military veterans who came to their office. So, they purposely did not want to work with outsiders.

 

ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. This is one of the biggest problems with state and/or federal (usually DoD) funded organizations like TAP, ACAP and the like.

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