Getting America’s Veterans Back to Work

November 11, 2015

This week America celebrates military veterans who have served and protected the U.S. These roughly 21.9 million men and women endure tremendous sacrifices for the good of the nation, putting their lives on the line to defend our safety and prosperity.

But for many veterans, the biggest challenge begins when they return home. Rejoining the civilian labor market is notoriously difficult for veterans, particularly younger enlisted veterans with little pre-military work experience.

Veteran Challenges
Young veterans today face significantly higher unemployment rates than average. The unemployment rate for veterans aged 25 to 34 was 7.7 percent in 2014, compared to just 6.5 percent for non-veterans in the same age group.

Part of the explanation for these patterns is that veterans as a group differ markedly from the general public. They face challenges in the form of being less likely to complete college, may attend less selective schools and endure social challenges that come with being more ethnically and economically diverse than the overall labor force.

Interestingly, once we control for these differences, studies show veterans fare about as well as other workers in the labor market. Enlisted veterans earn about the same as non-veterans with similar backgrounds, and a year of military service raises wages by about as much as a year of civilian work experience.

Finding Veteran Jobs
So where are today’s best job opportunities for veterans?

To answer that question, we looked at active job openings from companies that have denoted themselves as veteran-friendly employers as part of Glassdoor’s Pledges and Certifications program. These are employers who’ve pledged to make a “Veteran Hiring Commitment” in their recruiting efforts.

In the graphic below, we show where these jobs from veteran-friendly employers are located today. The top panel shows a state-by-state breakdown. The two bottom panels show city-by-city jobs, and the veteran-friendly employers who are hiring. To see the full job descriptions, click on the employer name in the lower-right panel.

To learn about the more than 1,400 employers who have made a commitment to helping America’s veterans find work, see our related post on the Glassdoor Corporate blog. For employers, be sure to visit the Glassdoor for Employers blog to find out how to showcase company pledges and certifications, including commitments to helping veterans find work.