Returning to civilian life presents new opportunities as well as challenges for Veterans. Many Veterans look forward to life after the military, because they can spend more time with family and friends and no longer have to worry about military structure or being deployed. At the same time, transitioning to civilian life may lead to a lot of questions. You may wonder what you are going to do with this new phase of your life, or if you will be able to find a job. You may think about going back to school but not know where to start. Or, you may miss the order and discipline of military life compared to civilian life and wonder if you will be able to adjust. If you are a member of the National Guard or Reserves, you may be worried about transitioning back into a civilian workplace. Will you return to the same position with the same responsibilities? Will your colleagues understand what you’ve been through and welcome you back?
The bottom line is that you can make a successful transition. As you seek employment after the military, remember the skills you have acquired in the military are very valuable to private sector and government organizations. These skills put you at an advantage in the civilian job market. Employers recognize that your ability to handle adversity, work under pressure, and work in a team environment are important skills for every business. The organizations and the websites below provide governmental and private sector resources that can assist you in your transition to the civilian work and education sectors.
Federal Government Web Sites
State Government Web Sites
Private Sector Web Sites
Networking Web Sites
Personal/Skills Assessment Web Sites
- Transition Assistance Online, TAOnline.com, is the largest source of transition assistance information, jobs and tools for today's separating military. On this career site for military veterans, service members can find the resources needed to transition from their much appreciated military service, to the perfect civilian career. Military hiring employers and advertisers can post job ads, search resumes and advertise directly to military candidates.
- The National Resource Directory (NRD) provides access to services and resources at the national, state and local levels that support recovery, rehabilitation and community reintegration. Visitors can find information on a variety of topics including benefits & compensation, education & training, employment, family & caregiver support, health, homeless assistance, housing, transportation & travel and other services & resources.
- The Verification of Military Experience and Training (VMET) web site is sponsored by the Department of Defense to provide eligible service members a VMET document (DD Form 2586) on demand. The VMET data is a portion of a member's career history, which comes from a large database built over the years with data received from the four service's official personnel and training systems. This VMET occupational and training history data is matched to time-appropriate narrative descriptions to generate the VMET document.
- US Department of Veterans Affairs web site.
- Make the Connection
is a public awareness campaign by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) that provides personal testimonials and resources to help Veterans discover ways to improve their lives. Many of our Nation’s Veterans—from those who served in World War II to those involved in current conflicts—return not only with physical wounds but also mental health issues they may not recognize. The Make the Connection
campaign encourages Veterans and their families to "make the connection"— with information and resources, with the strength and resilience of Veterans like themselves, with other people, and with available sources of support including mental health treatments. Central to this campaign is MakeTheConnection.net, a one-stop resource where Veterans and their families and friends can privately explore information about physical and mental health symptoms, challenging life events, and mental health conditions. On this site, Veterans and their families and friends can learn about available resources and support.
- The Department of Labor sponsors this website that provides a wide range of information of interest to veterans; including e-VETS Advisor, Veterans’ Preference Advisor, Uniformed Services Employment & Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) Advisor and many other resources for the veteran.
- US Department of Labor site that provides a crosswalk search that compares military jobs to civilian careers and then look through a wealth of data – wages, employment outlook, required skills – on those careers.
. This web site takes your military skills and assists in finding equivalent civilian occupations, exploring education opportunities to extend your skills, learning from veterans with your specialty, applying for jobs that match your skills, identifying civilian terminology for your resume, and identifying the hot career options for your specialty.
- US Department of Labor web site with information on the Gold Card
that provides unemployed post-9/11 era veterans with the intensive and follow-up services they need to succeed in today's job market. The Gold Card initiative is a joint effort of the Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and the Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS). An eligible veteran can present the Gold Card at his/her local One-Stop Career Center
to receive enhanced intensive services including up to six months of follow-up. The enhanced in-person services available for Gold Card holders at local One-Stop Career Centers
Job readiness assessment, including interviews and testing;
Development of an Individual Development Plan (IDP);
Career guidance through group or individual counseling that helps veterans in making training and career decisions;
Provision of labor market, occupational, and skills transferability information that inform educational, training, and occupational decisions;
Referral to job banks, job portals, and job openings;
Referral to employers and registered apprenticeship sponsors;
Referral to training by WIA-funded or third party service providers; and
Monthly follow-up by an assigned case manager for up to six months.
- Web site that provides information on educational and job opportunities for military veterans. News, advice and resources to help you get a degree, search for a job or start your own business – from vet success stories to the most comprehensive military job fair calendar on the web.
- Corporate Gray links employers with transitioning and former military personnel. Veterans can get instant access to career building resources including career-building resources, increased visibility to potential employers, job fairs and job listing.
- Warrior Gateway is a portal that connects members of the military community – active duty, National Guard, Reserve, veteran, family member, caretaker – with the resources they need as they transition to civilian life. Warrior Gateway aims to serve as a resource by enabling the military community to quickly find and navigate service organizations and programs, identify academic programs, and employers.
- Website provides an overview of employment, support, compensation, benefits and other issues that affect veterans.
- Job Bank USA provides a comprehensive suite of career building tools.
- The Society for Human Resource Management is working with two groups to help employers recruit and retain current and former members of the military. Read below for more information on how the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) can help HR professionals find, hire and retain skilled military service members.
- American Corporate Partners. Connecting US Veterans to business leaders through our two free programs: an online network offering business advice, and a nationwide mentoring program.
- An innovative online career-matching tool and talent platform from Futures Inc., the leader in talent management technology, that allows military veterans to accurately determine which civilian jobs best link up with their military experience/skills. The tool also allows job seekers to pinpoint employment opportunities that meet their specific location, align their military skills to civilian jobs and satisfy their pay requirements. The listing of available jobs is aggregated from all national job postings and refreshed daily.