Your Guide to How to Transition from Military to Civilian Work

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Your Guide to How to Transition from Military to Civilian Work

Self-knowledge is one of the most important qualities you need when transitioning from military to civilian work.

Do you have an understanding of who you are and what your strengths and weaknesses are? This will help you as you search for the right job.

In this article, we are going to go over some tips that will help the transition go smoothly.

Do you want to understand how to transition from military to civilian life better? Keep reading to find out.

Transition From Military to Civilian Job

We are going to cover a few things to think about when looking for a civilian job. Take a look!


What are your strengths? Take time, sit down and think about what your skill set is. Think about what you did well in your military experience and before the military. These are the skills you performed well at.

Typical strengths one might see from working in the military are as follows: meeting deadlines, following directions, operating under pressure, staying highly disciplined, working well with others, and keeping a strong work ethic.

These are things you might not think anything of, but they are what make you unique. Do not take them lightly.

Think About Your Interests

No matter what your duties were in the military, sit down and write down a list of things you like to do. Highlight the ones you particularly enjoy and are good at.

Include work-related and military items as well as weekend activities and hobbies.

List 5 activities and interests that motivate and energize you.

This will give you direction when deciding what career path to pursue or if you want to further your education by gaining a trade.

Research Civilian Careers

Once you have a better understanding of what your interests and strengths are, take some time to match careers that align with them. One of the worst things you can do is to choose a job or career that is not fulfilling or satisfying to you.

Make sure it lines up with what you enjoy and are good at.

The more time you spend here trying to find something that matches what you are good at and what you like, the more successful you will be in the long run.

Don't rush into something.

Talk to employers and employees. Find out what jobs people enjoy and what companies are good to work for.

Do your research and don't rush into anything. You want to make sure you find a job that will be a good fit.

Do You Want to Go Back to School or College?

After your research, you may decide that the career that interests you the most requires more training or education. Do you have the ability to delay entering the workforce?

Can you go back for extra schooling or do you need to work right away?

Think about this before making a decision. You may find a college or degree program that suits your interests and needs. Find something that will enable you with a skill so when you graduate, you can enter the workforce.

Specific colleges set up internships and work placements for you. Think about choosing one of those programs because they set you up for success.

For veterans, there is a bill that helps with education. Honorably discharged vets can get some help. Look into this before signing up for school or deciding you cannot afford it.

Create a Resume of Your Accomplishments and Skills

Employers are going to want to see a complete history of your accomplishments and skills.

They want to see what you earned and what you are skilled at. Be detailed and explain what you did that resulted in a positive outcome whether that was safely transporting people or being a great leader.

Accomplishments are unique, and they show how you helped contribute to the company or organization's overall success. Focus on these when you are building your profile.

These aren't job duties or responsibilities but how you went above and beyond in your line of work.

This will make your profile pop out!

Research Employers

Knowing about a company and understanding their values and mission is essential when job hunting. You also want to understand their corporate culture, benefits, and hiring decisions. Make sure you do your research before applying.

Did you know that some companies are more vet-friendly than others? Research and find out if the company you are interested in working for is one of them.


The great thing with civilian and military jobs are there is plenty of crossovers.

When you are looking to build your CV or resume, focus on the crossover skills you gained in your previous military job.

Your new boss or potential boss will be keen to see how the talents and skills you had will apply well to the new position you are seeking.

A fighter pilot could serve as a commercial airline pilot or anyone with experience as a communications specialist might be interested in working for a radio station or newspaper. An officer could be a leadership coach. The ideas are endless.

Match up the skill set you have from your military experience and don't settle.

Think outside the box.

Create a resume that highlights these things.

Final Thoughts

Some of what you have learned in the military will transfer to your new job and some will not. Be aware of this. There is a different communication style, and you need to understand that. Adjust your style accordingly to the job.

In this article, we went through some of the critical factors to consider when you transition from military to civilian jobs.

You want to make sure that you do your research before applying for a job. Make sure you know that the company or work culture is a good fit for you. Assess what your interests and skills are. Highlight them on your resume.

If returning to school is something that interests you, go for it! There may be financial aid for you. Research all your options and then make a decision.

If you want more help about next steps, read this article we wrote about jobs for veterans! 

Veteran Employment: A Complete Guide to Ease Your Transition into Civilian Life

As military servicemen, you have been trained to master a series of skills that were used during your military career, and that can serve you to find suitable jobs as you go back to your civilian life. However, the transition can be harsh for some veterans as the benefits that come as part of military life disappear, and you have to look for a stable job with a steady income to cover for your needs. Additionally, the veteran employment market can be a difficult path to go through if you don’t have the right information to start a proper job hunt.

The employment options for veterans can be perceived as limited if don’t know where to look. Many servicemen enter the force right after high school and don’t have further studies. However, this is not an obstacle to find a good job that pays well and helps you have all the benefits you used to have in the force.

Veterans know how to handle stress and can work under pressure, see the value of discipline and teamwork, can design a strategy to meet an objective, and can follow a leader and know how to lead as well. Remember that frustration is the enemy of motivation; therefore, it is essential to have a sense of achievement after every job interview. Stay focused, keep reading and follow these suggestions carefully before you embark into the veteran employment quest.

1.     Analyze and Identify Your Skills

It is very important to look for an option that matches your skills. If you can’t type, it is useless to look for secretary positions, right? Alternatively, you can search for professional help to identify your skills. Take a vocational test and determine which job options work best for your individual skills.

2.     Build a Network with Your Peers

Finding a job can be very hard if you go solo. It is crucial to have a support network to stay informed and discuss your strategy so you can learn if you’re doing something wrong and thus, plan a new strategy. Compare your resume with that your peers and research for places that are recruiting even though they haven’t posted any ads yet. If possible, hire a recruiter to help you find the options with the least competition possible.

3.     Update Your Skills

The competition is fierce out there! Stay up to date with the new technology and techniques used in your field so you can increase your chances to be selected. You could enroll in adult schools or further your studies at the university. You could also join in the NPower program, a federal government program sponsored by foundations and grants. NPower offers veterans a chance to improve their skills or learn new ones in a completely free program. Remember to update your resume as you develop your skills.

4.     Use Social Media on Your Favor

Social media is everywhere and that includes job recruiters. Follow companies that might offer jobs that suit your profile. You could also benefit from LinkedIn —try to keep your profile updated and look for job opportunities. Check your email regularly; you might lose a job opportunity if you wait too long to answer. You could also create a profile in job marketplaces and filter your job search to fit your skills and needs.

5.     Inform Yourself about Government Programs

There are federal programs that offer help to veterans looking for a job. The Veterans’Preference Hiring Program, for example, helps those heroes that have served the military forces and want to start their lives as civilians again. The Veterans’ Preference Program gives veterans the first option to get federal job positions. Even though the program offers job positions for all veterans, it provides special attention to those service members that have suffered accidents with permanent consequences and are considered disabled.

Having a veteran as part of your workforce should bring pride to any company. They are highly-trained physically and mentally, plus they have strong values that could greatly benefit the growth of any business.

- Employers: each time you review the resume of a veteran, think of all the skills you will be adding to your workforce.

- Veterans: never settle for less than you deserve. Make a wise job search and find a job position that makes you feel comfortable.

Our veterans have set an example of discipline and love for the country, showing our gratitude is the least we can do for them.

What Are The Highest Paying Vet Jobs Near Me?

When we are starting a new life after serving in the military, most of us want to find something to do near our loved ones. Sometimes we would consider relocating if we find a job that we love, but most of the time we would start our new civilian life by searching “vet jobs near me” in Google or other search engines to find the one that best matches our skills set and our interests, but also lets us stay in or near our area.

That’s why we thought it would be useful to compile a list of jobs for veterans with a high-paying salary that can be found almost anywhere in the US.

1.Operations Manager

An operations manager is in charge of making the processes of a Company as efficient as they can be and coordinate activities and communication between the different departments, so all procedures in the production and/or sale of goods and/or services run seamlessly.

An operations manager’s salary can vary between $64K more than 150K, but the average is a little under 100K per year.

The operations manager is a broad category, and some of the positions advertised for this type of job are a store manager, facility manager, plant superintendent, facilities manager, business manager and others.

2.Nurse Practitioner

A nurse practitioner is a licensed clinician who can administer certain types of treatments without the need to consult a doctor. They focus on managing health conditions and preventing diseases and specialize by types of patients or patient population such as gerontological, pediatric, women’s health, oncological, and others.

Many of those who have served have had experience and training in first aids and other on-field medical practices, this means that they already have experience in providing healthcare under extraordinary circumstances. If this fits your profile, you should probably consider getting a certification as a nurse practitioner.

This job is the third highest paid job in the healthcare sector. Typically, nurse practitioners make between $86K and 120K but, on average, a nurse practitioner makes around 100K.

3.Cyber Security Experts

This type of professionals find ways to protect different companies or organizations computer networks to make sure information doesn’t fall in the wrong hands. With businesses and everyday life becoming more dependent on digital technology and internet connections, these professionals are in an ever-growing demand.

And the price people put on protecting their information is not low.

Cyber Security Experts make anything between 130K and over 200K, and if you aim for the CISO positions, this number can increase to nearly 400K.

4.Human Resources Manager

A Human resources manager or director, depending on the size of the company, can lead various departments that are in charge of hiring, training, and dealing with all other matters such as administrative functions related to a company’s employees.

Human resources managers make, depending on the industry where they work, between 90K and 120K and the positions vary from Employee Relations Manager to VP of human resources, depending on the scope of the job and the size of the company.

These are only four of the highest paying positions available out there that can be found if you perform a search for vet jobs near me. There are many other options that you can find using online search tools and vet jobs databases.

Review the skills you obtained during your time in the military and before or after that, evaluate if you need to gain further qualifications to apply for the job you want, and get your hands to it. The Department of Labor has many resources such as the Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) and the Federal Contractor Compliance Program that could come in handy when re-acclimating to the civilian life.

Jobs for veterans

Are you a veteran looking for a career transition but don't know how to start? There’s good news for you. Transitioning into private service can often be quite hard. But there are literally thousands of full-time and part-time jobs out there for you. Ranging from healthcare jobs to law enforcement and more. Options abound.

There are more and more jobs for veterans every day. Many places are hiring veteran employees. If you need a little inspiration to reimagine your civilian life, start here. Being a veteran is something to be proud of and on behalf of our organization, we thank you for your service.

Law enforcement jobs

Local law enforcement is essential for the wellbeing of a community. For that reason, local governments seek experienced veterans interested in making their communities safer. This can be a very rewarding career path for many veterans. There are many options. You could, of course, opt for a career in the police force. But there's also security officers, correctional officers, executive protection specialists, and more.

Computers & technology

The rate of automation happening nowadays can be overwhelming for many of us. The US Armed Forces own some of the most advanced technology available nowadays. Veterans with experience working with such tools are ideal candidates for technology-related jobs. There’s a noticeable shortage of computer engineers, programmers, and technicians. Among the job options in the technology field, there’s computer tech jobs, information technology jobs, help desk jobs, information systems jobs, and software development.

Aerospace & Defense

Most of the modern world is a byproduct of advances made in the US space program. These advances have come from discoveries that answered challenges posed to aerospace engineers. Jobs in this field include program quality engineer, plant manager, systems engineering, etcetera. If your military experience didn't include training in these fields, you'd need certification. A mechanic’s or repairman’s certificate, plus airframe rating, power plant rating (or both) are ideal. The estimated annual salary is $60,270, and the field shows a steady 5% growth in jobs.

Operations management

The duties of operations managers are variable, depending on their business and industry. They are all about efficiency and improving operations. They coordinate between departments to ensure smooth production of goods or services. This is a popular career path for veterans with leadership and operational skills. For this job, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree and strong leadership capability. Military operational or logistics experience is a huge plus. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 5-9% job growth in the sector. Jobs in this field include facility manager, plant manager, production manager, business manager, and operations director.

First-line Supervisor (Automotive)

First-line supervisors in the automotive industry are in charge of mechanics and technicians. Employers hire first-line supervisors to oversee day-to-day operations. Responsibilities depend mainly on the scale and nature of the operation. It could be anything from large retailers operating entire fleets to transportation companies. This job requires a high school diploma or GED and related experience. This is the perfect opportunity to transfer your military training into a solid job.

If you want to get more information, contact us.

How Do I Find Jobs For Veterans Near Me?

Making the jump from military service to the civilian workforce sector can get a little discouraging at times. However, it is a transition that every veteran is more than equipped to make. I work alongside a couple of organizations explicitly geared towards facilitating these transitions, and one of the most frequently asked questions whenever I’m talking with a former soldier looking for work is “How do I find jobs for veterans near me?


Job hunting can be very hard, yes, as the goal is to find an ideal position that both fits with your particular skill set, and is rewarding enough to keep you engaged and motivated. The problem is that finding that “right fit” sometimes requires you commute long distances or even move to a different city or state. And this can be a serious issue when you have a family, or deal with a disability that makes traveling cumbersome.


So, going back to the original question of “How do I find jobs for veterans near me?” I keep finding that in most cases, isn’t so much about looking harder, but smarter. Having the correct approach and using the proper tools will save you time and energy and make that search much more manageable. Which in turn will net you the results you are after in a more speedy manner.


With that in mind, I wanted to share with you guys a few resources and “working strategies,” that I’ve noticed to have great success with the vets I’ve worked with, and that can probably benefit you in your search.

Figure out your field


The first thing I’d advise you is to take a good look at your skillset, and the type of job you are looking for. Applying to a large number of varying types of jobs might seem like a good idea initially, but I’ve seen this approach to be time-consuming and energy draining, as you need to keep track of a more substantial number of leads that don’t necessarily pan out.


A better approach, I’d argue, is to home into the type of position or job you’d like to have. You must go over your military career, and by highlighting the pieces of knowledge and skills that fit prominently with that type of job, then looking for an opening on that field within your chosen location.


Some military careers translate very well into the civilian job market, things like paralegal, careers in medicine, or jobs in the IT sector. However, if you want a change of direction and want to try getting a job in a new industry, then figure out what transferable skills you have for that sector and get a bit of study/training in areas that might help you get that position. It will be worth it.


Consider the government sector


Once your service is over, a great place to look into for jobs is the federal government. The federal government gives significant preference to veterans, taking into account their service track record.


Needless to say, these positions come with significant benefits, and the prospect of earning a second retirement, ending up with a military pension as well as a government pension.


The fields are broad, not just political or administrative positions, and they have openings all over the country, which serves the purpose of finding a great job near you.


Try Specialized Job Markets


While you can, and should, apply for job openings that suit you from any source you find, you should know that there are several job markets online which can narrow your search parameters and give you a higher chance of success finding that job post more expediently.


Sites like USA jobs are perfect when you want to apply for jobs in the governmental sector, and places like JofDav can be a huge source of job offerings more than open to hired veterans with disabilities.


These jobs markets will usually allow you to narrow down your search by locations, making it simpler to find those that would fit your situation.


Before you leave, let me reiterate, finding the right job can be difficult, but it can most definitively be done.


Veterans’ unemployment figures are slowly but surely decreasing, and the general job market is realizing what a powerful asset having a veteran as part of your job force is. If you are asking yourself “how do I find jobs for veterans near me?” It is just about knowing where to look, keeping your eyes focused on the goal, and your spirit motivated. It is just a matter of time.