NEWS + ADVICE
Transitioning Military Tips from a Veteran Peraton Recruiter
My name is Jeff Carson and I am a Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist with Peraton. I’m also a retired veteran who has been recruiting for 14 years. I’m always excited to help veterans find opportunities and share some advice that can help them transition.
Peraton is a defense contractor specializing in space, intelligence, defense, Homeland Security, citizen security, and health services. We have 18,000 employees, and more than 3,000 are military veterans. We have many opportunities, local, nationwide, and also overseas.
In my role at Peraton, I source candidates at times, but I also help people find opportunities. Our careers page usually has over 2,000 current openings. So sometimes finding the right opportunity depends on your search pattern. How are you using your MOS code? Are you using keywords? We’re definitely excited about hiring veterans and we’re always looking for you.
How can veterans ensure they’re found by recruiters?
Of course, you want to be on job boards. So ClearedJobs.Net is a good place to start. And you want to have an updated resume on there. Also, make sure that you are on LinkedIn. I would say probably 99.9% of our recruiters have a LinkedIn account where they’re actively looking for passive candidates. So make sure that you have an active profile, and your title is really important too.
Recruiters also use job fairs. In-person job fairs are a good place to be found. I’ve met a lot of great veterans at recent job fairs and my expectation is that we will hire some of them as I pass those resumes along to our active recruiters.
Job fairs are also a good place to practice your elevator pitch. Many people are struggling with how to share a little bit about their background. So it’s not only a good place to meet representatives from the company, but it’s a good place to practice your elevator pitch. So those are the three places. Make sure you’re on resume boards, LinkedIn, and also attending in-person job fairs.
When should transitioning military start applying for jobs?
You’re probably going to get a lot of different advice from recruiters, telling you to apply at 60 days or 45 days out—but in some cases, you can apply a little earlier. For instance, some of our opportunities are in the proposal phase. So you could apply for a position that you’re a good match for, while it’s pending the contract award. Contingent positions are also on our careers page. Currently about 90% of our revenue comes from our prime contract awards. You can even apply for multiple positions at Peraton. So don’t feel like, ‘I’m not available right now, so I’m not going to apply.’ There are a lot of opportunities like that.
Also, on our careers page you can actually search for jobs by entering your MOS code. And that will pull up jobs that we currently have open that line up with it. You can also search by keyword, clearance level, or location, including remote opportunities.
What is the SkillBridge program?
SkillBridge is a DoD initiated internship program, where transitioning service members can actually go to work as an intern, six months from their transition out of the military. It’s on-the-job training. You have to find a company that’s willing to sponsor you, that’s a good match for your background, because the goal is to end with a job. So if you’re ever fortunate enough to get a SkillBridge internship, just know that at the end of the process, they have to give you an interview. Most of the time, if we’re looking to bring you on as an intern, the end goal is for you to get a job with Peraton.
All of our SkillBridge opportunities are on our careers page. Type in “SkillBridge” and it’ll pull up all of those opportunities with Peraton. Now, you still have to be accepted and approved. So even if you think you’re a good match, it’s similar to being screened for a job where they’re going to look at your skill set and the requirements for the internship that we’re looking for.
Do I really need to apply online?
Many of our veterans are referred. But whether you’re referred or you meet a Peraton recruiter at a job fair, you still have to apply online. That’s a requirement for us. It’s a fair hiring practice we follow. But applying also gives all of our recruiters access to you, since we all have access to our applicant tracking system. When you apply online, you can even be looked at for another role that you may not have been aware of originally. So creating a profile and applying online has benefits for you.
Why do applications ask about veteran disability status?
When I first transitioned, I paused at that question. I wondered, if I put down a disability is that going to hurt me? But in reality, it actually helps the company. It allows us to capture how many veterans we are hiring with disabilities. And we’ve won many awards showing that we’re a veteran-friendly company. How many veterans do you hire? How many veterans with disabilities do you have? How many military spouses do you hire? This information benefits the company – it doesn’t hurt you when it comes to the application process.
Hear more from Jeff Carson about finding a job at Peraton in our Military Monday webinar.
Find more articles to aid your military transition.This entry was posted on Monday, July 25, 2022 12:54 pm