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Post-Military Job Applications

You have served your country and gained an abundance of marketable skills and training, and now it’s time to put those talents to work in the world outside the Armed Forces.  It can feel a little overwhelming, particularly to a service member who may have joined straight from high school without having experienced the practice of job seeking, resume writing, interviewing, and so on.  You have no reason to worry, though, as there are a plethora of resources available to former members of the military in seeking and securing jobs in the civilian world.

There are many career paths in the civilian world which specifically put to use the training and experiences you have gained in the Armed Forces.  Think along the lines of jobs in law enforcement, careers with the Transportation Security Administration or Security Clearance, careers with Correctional Institutions, jobs in retail Loss Prevention or Private Security, or (depending on the specifics of your own experience and training during your military career) positions in Aerospace, Defense, Engineering, Healthcare and Nursing, Maintenance and Mechanics, or Teaching and Education.

Translate your military skills to their civilian applications, and you should have a bang-up resume to submit with your job applications.  Writing the resume itself may be a first time experience for you if you have always held your jobs through the Armed Forces, but there are numerous resources to help you format and compose the resume best suited for application to the civilian jobs you have in mind.  Take a look at template and sample resumes available online to gather ideas about formatting, appearance, the type of information included, and how that information is presented.    You will want to include bullet-point listings of your education and trainings, job titles and positions (with a brief, single sentence description of your responsibilities and skills used in each), and information about your accomplishments—awards or recognitions you have won, special projects or operations you completed or led, leadership positions for which you have been recognized, and so forth—with a brief descriptor of any item which may not be familiar to a civilian reader.

Network with other veterans!  As you transition from military to civilian life, do not lose sight of the fact that, as a member of the Armed Forces, you have a ready-made and built-in network of contacts that have already transitioned into the community.  Do not be shy about reaching out to other veterans and members (former and present) of the military service to make inquiries about job openings, ask for recommendations and job ideas, and make the most of the existing social network.

You might also consider looking out for Career Expos and Job Fairs which cater specifically to veterans and former members of the military, subscribe to the Veteran Jobs Newsletter distributed by, and check out the database of Military-Friendly Employers.  Many prospective employers are happy to hire members of the Armed Forces, not only because of their skills and experience, but because of the work ethic, personal discipline, and organizational awareness of those with military experience.

You can learn more about other jobs in the Armed Forces industry.


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