Hiring a Veteran Is a Smart Business Move for Any Company
With the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, there has been an increase in veterans seeking employment. In fact, since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center, over two and a half million American military personnel had been deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, or both. Of that total, more than a million have since left the military.
The unemployment rate for America's veterans exceeds the national average, with 4.5 percent of veterans being unemployed, and as of 2019, underemployment of veterans has grown to a whopping 34 percent. It’s time to change that. Today, the Palm City Chamber of Commerce shares some tips on how you can add more veterans to your workforce.
Benefits of Hiring Veterans
Veterans bring with them skills that can be beneficial to any business, such as leadership, discipline, teamwork, and problem-solving. These skills are often not taught in schools but are valuable assets for any company looking to hire new employees. All of this is to say that hiring a veteran for your open, higher-paid skilled positions is a win/win for everyone.
What Jobs Are Veterans Great At?
The military is a fast-paced environment that requires quick decisions and action. Veterans are trained to be organized, can handle a high volume of work, and are perfect for positions that require an ability to make quick decisions in a high-pressure environment, such as emergency services and police forces. Veterans tend to have more experience than their civilian counterparts with taking orders from superiors, which also makes them particularly well-suited for management positions. Some jobs that veterans are particularly suited for are:
Security Guard: The job of an enlisted soldier is to defend the country, and because so many veterans are trained in conflict resolution and self-defense, this is a perfect fit.
Project Manager: This position requires people who are detail-oriented and know how to lead, making veterans a perfect choice.
Information Security Analyst: Veterans trained in preventing cyberattacks and protecting data from foreign agents can put that knowledge to use for your business.
Firefighters: Most veterans are trained in how to extinguish a fire and more than likely have some experience with it.
There Are Tax Incentives for You, Too
The government offers many benefits for employers who hire military veterans. These benefits can be found in the form of tax credits, grants, and other incentives. One of the most popular ones is the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). The tax credit is available for employers who hire qualified veterans and have not been employed more than one year before or after their time in the military. The employer must also have a minimum number of employees with wages under $6,000 per year. The tax credit is worth up to $2,400 per veteran, and it’s available for every veteran hired by an employer during the year. As an employer, you may also need to provide your employees with a notice of eligibility for this tax credit when they are hired or at some point during their employment if you meet certain requirements.
In addition, it is advised you update your employee handbook. It’s probably already in PDF form, and changes will be necessary. This site could be helpful if you need to compress, edit, sign, or make other changes to your PDF files. It also includes a tool to export PDFs so you can send your updated handbook to your HR department and team members.
If You’re a Veteran with an Entrepreneur Dream, Go for It
Finding yourself underemployed is frustrating, especially if you feel like you have the skills and knowledge to run your own business. Write a business plan to help you navigate the process and to present it to lenders when you’re ready for funding assistance.
Protect your personal assets by structuring your new business as a limited liability company (LLC), because that particular business structure presents you with certain legal protections and tax benefits. You’ll also want to secure an employer identification number (EIN), which will make it easier to keep your finances separate.
Employers who hire military veterans will have access to skills and leadership qualities that are hard to find in other candidates. And by hiring a veteran, not only do you get a great employee and become eligible for tax incentives, you are, in a way, giving back something to your country as well.
The Palm City Chamber of Commerce has exclusive events and resources that will help your business thrive in our community. Become a member today!