First introduced by the British colonial government in 1954, national military service now becomes mandatory for every male Singaporean citizens aged 18 years old and older. These men are required to serve the country, defence the nationality from any form of attacks for either 2 or 2 years and six months depending on each candidate’s educational qualifications.
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After serving the duty, unfortunately, servicemen are often prone to unemployment. There are about 174.1 million unemployed persons worldwide and nearly half of them coming from working-age veterans. Among the reason why ex-military community is left unemployed is often due to the lack of knowledge employers possess about them. BITC surveyed that most employers lack knowledge about ex-serviceman. They are also having misconceptions based on negative stereotypes such as veterans might suffer greatly from post-traumatic stress. This kind of wrong perception is what employers should address. Thus, to help you acknowledge the true potential of ex-military personnel, read on the following points.
Do you know skills that veterans possess are a close match for skill shortage that employers face today?
BITC revealed that evidently, veterans are well-placed to meet critical gaps in cross-functional skills. Including strategic management, managing or motivating staff, team-working and positive attitude, there are more potentials you can dig and get from just ex-serviceman without training them.
As an employer, you should learn that hiring military job seekers will help reduce the cost of unemployment for wider society. Hiring them also reflects the social responsibility of an employer and builds goodwill with the military community, customers, and employees.
In military service, veterans are trained in a wide range of technical roles, including engineering, project management, HR, policing, transport, logistics, IT and communications, and other transferable skills. They also own excellent leadership skills as their responsibility in military progress through the ranks. Owing to this, veterans could help businesses in growing better. Without further needs for training, they are already able to contribute a lot and might progress better than their co-workers. Their discipline is one of the greatest assets you could ever have in today’s competitive markets.
In addition, organisations that employ veterans reported that ex-military man exhibit much needed cross-functional skills, notably team-working, motivating others, power of communication, problem-solving, organisational skills, as well as strategic thinking.
Loyalty, mission focus, willingness to accept responsibility, strong work ethic, resilience, and a positive can-do attitude – if you are looking for all of these characteristics in your candidates, you can find them easily when shortlisting a veteran candidate.
During the service, military personnel are constantly trained in a highly pressurised environment while they should act decisively and calmly. Their experience of working across geographies and diverse environments are respectably valuable for an organisation’s success. And one thing for sure, veterans remain very trainable and are capable of learning new skills in a private sector.
Physically and mentally, veterans are strong, making them able to perform better than their non-veteran counterparts. BITC showed that amongst other employees, ex-military employees tend to have lower rates of sickness absence. Companies also reported that their veteran employees stay longer within an organisation and take fewer early leave due to performance and discipline issues, hence, significant productivity and huge potential lies in the power of these ex-servicemen.
“More importantly, if you are in a position to hire, hire a veteran. They will be the best employees you have.” – Eric Shinseki
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