20 Companies With Standout Initiatives To Hire and Support Veterans
These companies offer a wide range of specific benefits and initiatives for members of the military community.
More than 200,000 Service members transition from the military back to civilian life every year, bringing with them a valuable skill set that includes a strong work ethic, leadership ability, resilience, and problem-solving skills. However, as the Under Secretary for Benefits, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Paul R. Lawrence, Ph.D., said in the 2018 “Military to Civilian Transition” report, “While the men and women of our armed forces are better trained, better educated, and better prepared for transition than ever before, they still face unique challenges in accessing health care, attaining education, and establishing careers that necessitate definitive action to help take care of their special needs.”
This Veterans Day, we’re recognizing 20 companies that go the extra mile to not only hire veterans, but to support them, their families, and others in the military community through specific benefits and initiatives. From working with foundations such as Hiring Our Heroes to offering Employee Resource Groups, career development, and mental health resources, these companies are clearly invested in the success and well-being of their veteran employees.
XPO Logistics, a top ten global logistics provider of cutting-edge supply chain solutions to the most successful companies in the world, has a dedicated program for the recruitment, promotion, and retention of veterans. XPO, which has been named as a top Military Friendly Employer, has more than 2,000 veterans serving in a wide variety of roles from executive leadership to LTL drivers to talent acquisition. 24 of XPO’s senior leaders are veterans, and veteran Abby Hyde heads up veteran recruiting at XPO, working alongside executives to provide support to the company’s other veterans through internal and external programs.
Some of those programs include professional development for veterans and awareness training for those in the workplace on the benefits of military experience, and a discussion series connecting veterans, spouses and employees. XPO is also a proud partner of The Honor Foundation, a career transition program for U.S. Special Operations Forces that effectively translates their elite military service to the private sector and helps create the next generation of corporate and community leaders. For Veterans Day this year, XPO is showing their appreciation for their employees who are veterans, along with the employees who are still serving, by presenting them with a Challenge Coin from XPO. These medallions, which typically bear the insignia of the organization the recipient serves, are common in the military and are presented to individuals to commemorate outstanding performance.
Textron Systems creates airborne solutions, including flight trainers and combat aircrafts, for U.S. and allied service members. With this focus, the company goes above and beyond to attract veterans who seek careers which continue to develop their military skill set. Primarily, the company provides a Military Skills Translator which helps veteran job seekers match their military job code to available positions within the company. Textron Systems’ Veterans Network (VETNET) supports Maryland Center for Veterans Education and Training which houses veterans from 21 to 71 years old and provides growth and healing initiatives in their community. As the military makes up the majority of Textron Systems' customer base, the company is proud to remain loyal to the men and women who they armed during their service.
Since 2014 Stryker has been a part of the Veterans Jobs Mission, an organization dedicated to addressing the needs of veterans in finding and keeping jobs. This medical technology company prides itself on having America’s heroes working in almost all functional areas of the corporation: such as Operations Management, Sales, Engineering, Supply Chain Management, Finance, and more. Their military career page is full of advice on interviewing and resume building for transitioning veterans in order to make the career search as simple as possible. Initiatives like these are why it is no wonder Stryker has been named a 2021 Military Friendly Employer and US Veterans Magazine Best of the Best 2020 company.
This logistics and transportation company isn’t only military-friendly, but it has strong incentives for members of the military community to join. They have a unique military apprenticeship program where for the first 12 months of a veteran’s employment they can earn up to an additional $1,266 a month in an educational benefit check. They also credit service members’ time in the military as driving experience credit if they served in a transportation capacity, which allows for a higher starting salary. These incentives explain why 22% of their drivers come from a military background.
Rockwell Automation saw that there was a shortage of talent in the manufacturing and technology industry that veterans – with their strong work ethic and training – could fill. In a partnership with Manpower Group, Rockwell Automation launched the Academy of Advanced Manufacturing to recruit and train veterans for advanced manufacturing roles. The program is a 12-week course that combines traditional classroom learning with lab experience to ensure participants become experts in subjects from controllers to AC drives and motors. So far there have been more than 170 graduates from 10 cohort classes, consisting of veterans from the Coast Guard, Navy, and Marine Corps. 80% of these graduates have found roles that will address the industrial needs of the future, including with companies such as Cargill, Owens Corning, Georgia Pacific and, of course, Rockwell Automation.
This defense contractor company has great initiatives for their veteran employees as well as military spouses. Raytheon has strong partnerships with many military-focused organizations like Student Veterans of America, where students are mentored by veteran employees. Specifically for military spouses, they offer a program called “Raytheon ReLaunch.” It aims to support military spouses returning to the workforce after taking a career break, and provides them with a 12-week paid program to learn skills and re-engage into the workplace. Raytheon veteran employees have also helped raise millions of dollars for organizations that support the troops.
Palo Alto Networks
With the vision of making each day safer and more secure than the one before, Palo Alto Networks knows that hiring veterans is a critical component to their success. Founded by military veterans, Palo Alto Networks formed its Veterans Program to help service members foster new skills and create successful careers in cybersecurity. From providing free digital learning courses on cybersecurity, to sponsored events, an employee resource group, networking opportunities, and mentorship resources, veterans can grow at Palo Alto Networks and in the wider tech industry.
This aerospace and defense company is continuously awarded for their commitment to veterans, who make up 20% of their workforce. They have multiple programs in place to help all veterans transition into the workplace, including their “Navigator” program which pairs an incoming veteran hire with a veteran employee to provide guidance, networking opportunities, and help create a welcoming culture from day one. Another program “Operation IMPACT” focuses on specifically helping injured veterans adjust and transition into the workforce. There are also over 2,000 members in their ERG “VERITAS” which is comprised of veterans who are dedicated to giving back to the military community.
The pharmaceutical company cements itself as a veteran-friendly workplace through their extensive benefits and veteran hiring initiatives. This includes differential pay and full benefits during active duty mobilizations. Their Veteran’s ERG is involved with all aspects of veteran employees such as recruiting, onboarding, and mentoring transitioning service members. The group also helps raise awareness of veteran’s issues and honors military service members throughout the year through activities, events, and outreach. One activity they’re involved in throughout the year is sending letters and packages to individuals currently serving, veterans, and VA hospitals.
Mayo Clinic, an American medical center ranked No. 1 in Best Hospitals by U.S. News and World Report, values leaders with mission and purpose. That’s why they’ve dedicated themselves to helping veterans transition to civilian careers where they can leverage their strengths in commitment, quality, and teamwork – traits heavily ingrained by military training. The company proudly partners with Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Company and Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve in order to support their veteran workforce, as well as hosts an annual veteran career fair. The Veterans Mayo Employee Resource Group (MERG) uses veteran talent and expertise to shape the clinic’s policy and improve patient care. The center also participates in 50strong sessions which are tailored to helping veterans, service members, and military spouses with resume and personal branding advice. Mayo Clinic prioritizes civilian career efforts because the company has found that veterans serve patients with the same devotion that they served our country.
L3 Harris actively works to help military veterans in any way they can. In fact, since 2010, they have hired more than 1,700 veterans, with 15% of their new employees being veterans. They not only provide opportunities for military veterans through job opportunities, but also through volunteer events, financial gifts and grants from the L3Harris Employees Actively Responding Together (HEART) program. The HEART program even organized a campaign, 120 days of service, that hoped to donate 40,000 hours to several philanthropic ventures, such as helping prepare hygiene kits for homeless veterans and families.
“From Boots to Business,” Love’s proudly hires veterans and active-duty military. This retail chain recognizes that experience in the military directly translates into a perfect culture fit for their fast-paced, multi-faceted, and customer-focused work environment. That’s why they offer the Love’s Leader Program to gain hands-on experience in every aspect of the organization (HR, Fuel Sales, Inventory Management, & more). Check out their page to hear directly from veteran employees about how Love’s creates an inclusive and supportive culture for our heroes.
As an aerospace and defense company, veterans are central to Lockheed Martin’s business, and make up 1 in every 5 of their employees. With 170 hiring events every year, Lockheed Martin reaches over 19,000 transitioning service members, and offers them skill matching and career counseling services. They’re also part of the Hiring Our Heroes Corporate Fellowship Program which allows transitioning service members, who are still on active duty, to be connected with fellowships in the private sector. Participants receive 12 weeks of on the job training and come away better prepared for a full-time job.
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
In 2011, JPMorgan created a dedicated Office of Military and Veteran Affairs to focus on their mission to serve the veteran community. Since then they’ve hired over 14,000 veterans, and deeded over 1,000 mortgage-free homes to veteran families through nonprofit partners. One of their initiatives has been partnering with Onward to Opportunity, where over 30,000 veterans have registered for this free career training, certification and employment program from the Institute for Veteran and Military Families at Syracuse University. They also helped co-found the Veteran Jobs Mission, a group of over 200 companies that committed to a goal of hiring one million veterans, and promote the engagement and career development for veterans in the private sector.
With seven percent of Intel U.S. based employees identifying as military Veterans, is it clear that Intel provides a welcoming environment and opportunities for our military heroes. By helping transform their military skills to skills they can use in a variety of jobs, Intel creates the opportunity to have veterans in a wide range of roles - from Manufacturing, Business, and Finance, to Information Technology, SoC Design, and Software. They also offer a variety of benefits, such as training and tuition assistance, help transitioning from the military, and comprehensive benefits that include Military Leave. Check out some of the stories from military veterans that now work at Intel here!
The Texas grocery chain with more than 400 locations, H-E-B is a proud supporter of military veterans and their families. H-E-B’s company-wide campaign, Operation Association partners with organizations supporting US troops and their families by contributing community service efforts through their talent, time, and financial resources. In 2019 H-E-B had more than 600 active employees deployed, and the company made sure to send holiday care packages to each one. Another noble contribution to the veteran community: the nearly 30 purpose-built homes that the company has gifted to severely injured former soldiers.
Dow, the innovative and sustainable material science leader recognizes and actively seeks the values and skills that veterans bring to their organization. Dow has several incredible initiatives to welcome veterans to their team and help employees with previous US Military experience transition easily into new roles and life stages. As part of their US Engagement Program and Veterans Resource Group, current employees serve as mentors to help new veterans source roles and adjust to Dow’s workplace culture. Dow also allows veterans with four or more years of US military experience to qualify for open positions that would otherwise require an Associate’s college degree. Dow offers the flexibility for up to five years military leave of absence, at which time there is usually a continuation of compensation and benefits from the company. Lastly, Dow has been an official sponsor of the US Invictus Games and US Warrior Games, which honor soldiers who risk their lives to fight for our country.
Booz Allen Hamilton
This veteran-founded information technology firm has proudly served the U.S. government for more than 75 years through their work, and continuously supports the employment of veterans, military spouses, caregivers, and others in the community. Some of Booz Allen Hamilton’s initiatives include a Veteran Recruiting Center of Excellence, Transition Assistance Program on military bases, and partnerships with Student Veterans of America and USO Metro to help veterans explore career opportunities and learn new skills. Additionally, they support employees who want to return to active duty by offering differential pay for up to six months, and continuing health and retirement benefits for the duration of an employee’s active-duty assignment. Booz Allen Hamilton also gives back to the military community on a larger scale – through their nonprofit partnerships with organizations like Hiring Our Heroes and the Elizabeth Dole Foundation, Booz Allen Hamilton is committed to tackling some of the military community’s toughest challenges.
Boeing strongly believes that members of the military community make their company better, and employs over 20,000 veterans, making up around 15% of their workforce. Through their military skills translator, veterans and transitioning service members can easily find jobs that align with the role they held in the military. Every year Boeing continues to further invest in veterans, both through employee initiatives and over $30 million in veteran organizations. One partnership is with USO’s Pathfinder program, the nation’s first comprehensive employment readiness program for transitioning military service members. They also support their employees by providing recovery and rehabilitation programs that focus on PTSD, mental and physical injuries, and suicide prevention.
This multinational defense and aerospace company shows its dedication to veterans by participating in numerous career development and recruiting events. They also partner with state and federal VA employment representatives to help identify opportunities within their organization, provide a military skills translator on their website, and are a partner of the White House initiative Joining Forces. One of their in-house company initiatives is the “Warrior Integration Program” created to assist in the employment, transition, education, and career development of wounded warriors. This includes a Veteran Mentorship Program where veteran employees help wounded warriors and their families make the transition to civilian life.
Veterans are a great asset to any company, making it essential to have benefits and initiatives that help them thrive in the workplace. This Veterans Day – and year-round – take inspiration from these 20 companies to shape your talent acquisition strategy and internal culture to successfully recruit and retain military talent.