Finding a job in today’s economy can be tough for anyone. For American military veterans, however, it can prove especially daunting. With numerous industries to choose from, finding a good starting point can be the hardest task of all. The good news is that certain industries are particularly good at utilizing military skill sets and will make the transition back into the civilian workplace easier.
Here are a few industries that might be home to the job of your dreams.
Average Salary for Industry: $49,000
A Few Careers: Registered Nurse, Physical Therapist, Medical Support Assistant, Health Technician
Health care is a fast-paced environment, making it ideal for veterans who are used to working under pressure. Careers within health care are some of the fastest growing in the U.S, with demand for registered and practical nurses growing as the population ages. Remember health care jobs aren’t just in hospitals, you will find health care workers in urgent care, outpatient clinics, schools and insurance companies too.
A common misconception is that a job within the health care industry will require an advanced degree, while in some cases this is true, there are many jobs that only need certification or a diploma.
Weapons and Security
Average Salary for Industry: $68,000
A Few Careers: Program Management Specialist, Lead Data Architect, Systems Analyst, Weapons Program Analyst
When it comes to weapons and security, military veterans are a shoo-in for the job. Within the weapons industry, most jobs require discipline, an attention to detail and in many cases, a familiarity with various weapons and their operation — skills that veterans have in abundance.
A lot of variety exists within security as well. An employee of the security industry could be working in crisis management, investigations, computer systems security, or in corrections (as a prison guard or warden). Because of this variety, salaries will vary between positions and fields.
Average Salary for Industry: $69,000
A Few Careers: General Engineer, Account Manager, Program Analyst, U.S. Customs and Border Officer
For some veterans, the desire to serve their country continues long after their service is complete. In cases like these, a career in government is ideal.
The government has dozens of agencies and organizations that welcome veterans. In fact, organizations like Feds Hire Vets devote their efforts to placing veterans in departments like homeland security, national defense and others. With enough time and ambition, you could be looking at a job as the Commander in Chief. Just ask the numerous presidents who served in the military.
A Few Careers: IT Specialist, Software Engineer, Business Analyst, Information Systems Technician
Because of the military’s special interest in having and employing only the most advanced technology available, veterans may have a distinct advantage in tech-based industries like IT, at least over the average civilian job seeker. One article by GI Jobs explained that its their level of dedication, strong work ethic and leadership skills that make veterans “prime candidates for the technology industry.” Likewise, the growing need for companies to go global by going digital means that systems architects, business analysts and other technology professionals are in high demand. The starting salaries in this industry are some of the highest available.
Average Salary for Industry: $56,000
A Few Careers: Contract Specialist, Project Manager, Systems or Software Engineer, Industrial Engineering Technician
Servicemen and women return to the civilian life trained in the art of efficiency and operating heavy equipment, two incredibly valuable skills in the engineering industry. Veterans seeking careers in the engineering field are joining a workforce that is helping companies across the globe connect digitally. Business networks and systems have never been more complex and for that reason the engineering industry will continue to grow and offer jobs to returning service members. Due to the variety of positions in this industry, expect to see a wide range of salaries and available jobs.
Average Salary for Industry: $68,000
A Few Careers: Training and Development Manager, Project Manager, Administrative Assistant, Recruiter
The Armed Forces focuses on developing strong problem solving skills and crisis management techniques that can provide invaluable insight and talent for companies. Veterans who did well in the highly structured environment of the military may enjoy attracting talent or training new talent for companies. Time in the armed forces undoubtedly develops unparalleled work ethic and discipline, traits suited well for a role in human resources.
For more information about industries that are hiring veterans, be sure to read our other articles about flexible and fast-growing areas of employment. Also be sure to check out resources like VetNet, designed to help veterans find civilian employment. Once you find a desirable career and begin looking at available positions, use sites like Glassdoor to gauge what the work environment is really like.
Do you know of any other careers veterans would excel at?
Photo courtesy United States Army