At today's anniversary celebration of Joining Forces, First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden announced the launch of a new integrated employment tool to connect veterans and service members with employers, and to help translate military skills into the civilian workforce. The Veterans Employment Center, an integrated, online tool connecting veterans, transitioning service members and their spouses with both public and private-sector employers, is the result of an interagency effort to improve, simplify and consolidate the current array of employment resources for veterans. Additionally, this will provide one comprehensive database of resumes for employers who are seeking to leverage the skills and talents of veterans, service members, and their spouses.
"Our service members haven't always had the time or information they needed to prepare their resumes, to plot their career goals, to meet with employers and get the jobs they deserve. And that's simply not acceptable," said First Lady Michelle Obama. "As my husband has said, when you've fought for this country around the world, you shouldn't have to fight for a job when you return home. Starting today, every single service member, every veteran, and every military family will have access to a new online tool that will revolutionize how you find jobs in both the public and private sectors. All you have to do is log on to ebenefits.va.gov."
"Veterans deserve an authoritative source for connecting with employers," said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki. "The online Veterans Employment Center is the single, federal source for veterans looking for new career opportunities, service members transitioning to the civilian workforce, and spouses and beneficiaries looking to connect with job opportunities."
The new online resource, called the Veterans Employment Center, is the first interagency tool to bring a wealth of public and private job opportunities, a resume-builder, military skills translator and detailed career and training resources together in one place. In connection with the First Lady and Dr. Biden's Joining Forces initiative, the Department of Veterans Affairs worked with employers, the Departments of Defense, Labor, Education, and the Office of Personnel Management to design and develop the site and incorporate features of existing online employment tools within government.
The result is an integrated solution providing veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses with the tools they need to connect to employers. With this tool, employers will be able to search and view Veteran, Service Member, and spouse resumes in one comprehensive location.
"Our service members transitioning to civilian life, as well as their spouses, deserve the resources they need to be successful," said Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. "Through this effort, they are getting that help. Our troops and their spouses are proven leaders, highly-skilled and hard-working. Employers hiring them are getting the best this nation has to offer."
"Improving veterans' employment is an all-hands-on-deck enterprise," said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez. "With more than 1 million service members projected to leave the military in the coming years, the Veterans Employment Center, along with the wealth of services the Department of Labor offers through its 2,500 American Job Centers, will connect our veterans and service members with both public and private sector employers eager to hire those with military experience."
"OPM's USAJobs program is excited to be partnering with the VA on making this a robust tool for our nation's veterans and transitioning service members seeking Federal employment," said OPM Director, Katherine Archuleta. "It has been more than four years since President Obama established the Veterans Employment Initiative and, in that time, the Executive Branch of Government hired the highest percentage of military veterans in more than 20 years -- of the 195,000 new employees hired in FY 2012, approximately 56,000 were veterans, equaling 28.9 percent of total hires. We can continue to honor and show our appreciation for the dedicated and heroic service of America's veterans by ensuring that they have every opportunity to continue their service to this great nation as Federal civilian employees. The Veterans Employment Center helps us honor these men and women by making employment opportunities available when our servicemen and women lay down their uniforms."
The Veterans Employment Center will provide employers with access to a targeted pool of resumes from veterans and transitioning service members, allowing them to search resumes to identify veterans with skill sets applicable to civilian employment at their organization, and to track progress towards reaching their veteran hiring goals. Resumes are visible to all employers with an active LinkedIn or Google profile. To prevent spam, an applicant's name and email address are redacted and only visible to employers verified by the VA as registered companies with the IRS.
Joining Forces is a national initiative launched by First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Biden to engage all sectors of society to give our service members and their families the opportunities and support they have earned. The site is built using open data and an open application programming interface to attract private-sector innovation.