Serv­ing their coun­try and your com­pany

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - OPINION - Miriam Dushane Man­ag­ing Part­ner Alaant Work­force So­lu­tions

At 92 years old, there is very lit­tle he hasn’t seen or ex­pe­ri­enced when it comes to the na­tion’s econ­omy. So when for­mer Fed­eral Re­serve Chair­man Alan Greenspan told CNBC re­cently, “This is the tight­est la­bor mar­ket I’ve ever seen,” that state­ment car­ried sig­nif­i­cant weight.

In­deed, the U.S. La­bor Depart­ment re­ported this year – for the first time since such record keep­ing be­gan in 2000 – that the num­ber of avail­able po­si­tions has ex­ceeded the num­ber of job seek­ers.

Em­ploy­ers in the Cap­i­tal Re­gion need no con­vinc­ing. Even as many con­tinue to add jobs, at­tract­ing and hir­ing qual­i­fied can­di­dates to fill them has be­come a sig­nif­i­cant chal­lenge. They would be well served to con­sider a pool of po­ten­tial em­ploy­ees that of­fers a unique com­bi­na­tion of ap­ti­tude and at­ti­tude, and has al­ready proven its will­ing­ness and abil­ity to be part of some­thing big­ger than one­self.

I’m talk­ing about our vet­er­ans.

In help­ing hun­dreds of area com­pa­nies hire thou­sands of em­ploy­ees, we know first­hand that vet­er­ans bring di­verse and valu­able ca­pa­bil­i­ties to the work­force. The cross-func­tional skills they’ve ac­quired through mil­i­tary train­ing are of­ten trans­fer­able to new oc­cu­pa­tions, in­clud­ing those in the high-tech sec­tor such as com­puter pro­grams and sys­tems. They have a proven abil­ity to learn and de­ploy new con­cepts and tech­niques quickly. They show re­spect for fol­low­ing poli­cies and pro­ce­dures that en­sure both ef­fi­ciency and safety. And, they have an un­com­mon ded­i­ca­tion to per­se­ver­ing through stress and ad­ver­sity to ac­com­plish a job well done.

Equally im­por­tant is the mind­set that vet­er­ans bring to work each day. They are well equipped to pro­vide the lead­er­ship that’s needed to move a project for­ward, but they also un­der­stand the value of team­work in achiev­ing ob­jec­tives. Many vet­er­ans have been de­ployed around the world, giv­ing them both a global view­point and ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing in di­verse and in­clu­sive en­vi­ron­ments. They have a sense of duty, and are or­ga­nized and dis­ci­plined. And, for a vet­eran, hon­esty and in­tegrity are more than just catch­phrases – they are words to live by.

On the prac­ti­cal side, hir­ing a vet­eran can also pro­vide fi­nan­cial ben­e­fits to a com­pany: tax cred­its are avail­able through the Work Op­por­tu­nity Tax Credit, en­acted as part of the Vow to Hire Heroes Act passed in 2011.

“As we ex­press our grat­i­tude, we must never forget that the high­est ap­pre­ci­a­tion is not to ut­ter words, but to live by them,” Pres­i­dent John F. Kennedy once said about vet­er­ans. For busi­ness lead­ers, that means giv­ing vet­er­ans an op­por­tu­nity to work and be­come pro­duc­tive mem­bers of so­ci­ety. The time to do so has never been bet­ter.

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