[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Unemployment rates have shown great variables, but in no other segment of the population is this more evident than that of veterans. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics noted that the rate of unemployment for veterans that are post-9/11 jumped from February 2016 to March 2016 with 4.7 percent and 6.3 percent unemployment, respectively. When the unemployment rates of all veterans were considered, these numbers increased as well. While February had a 4.1 percent unemployment rate, a 4.5 percent rate was noted in March 2016. This increase mirrored a national increase that saw unemployment rise across the country from 4.9 percent to 5 percent from February to March 2016.
What the Numbers Really Mean
These statistics are sobering because BLS data indicate that as of 2015, there are 21.2 million women and men who qualify as veterans. This figure equates to veterans making up about 9 percent of the civilian population that is not currently institutionalized. This means that 495,000 veterans were unemployed in 2015. Of those, more than half (57 percent) were 45 years of age or older. Female veterans saw an unemployment rate that was higher than males at 5.4 percent and 4.5 percent respectively.
NAA and TAAEF have established innovative services for our Veterans and their families.
Sarah Levine, Director of Workforce Development for The National Apartment Association, (NAA) added, “We have an area on our careers website that is specific to military family members. Here candidates can learn about why the rental property management (RPM) industry is a great fit for those with a military background and spouses who can benefit from a career that offers flexibility.
“We also connect these individuals to our RPM Careers Ambassadors who have a military background so that they can reach out through email or LinkedIn to learn from those who have been in their shoes and hear how they made the transition and why it was a great choice for them. We also highlight a company who has a specific training program for ex-military.”
Becca Ramati, Vice President of The Texas Apartment Association Education Foundation (TAAEF) says, “TAAEF strongly believes that it is not only good business to recruit from this well-trained and disciplined source of talent, but it is the right thing to do!
Over the past several years, TAAEF has focused on providing free CAMT classes for veterans, those separating from service and military spouses. With support from NAAEI, we have held six of these courses training over 88 individuals in five cities. We also actively recruit veterans for our successful Apartment Maintenance Professional and Apartment Leasing Professional training courses in partnership with local apartment associations and Goodwill Industries currently in Austin, El Paso, Houston and San Antonio.”
Private Sector Companies are getting involved
There are companies that are taking the initiative and offering innovative programs to help these valuable members of society transition from the military to civilian life. Access to one such program, Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA), is facilitated by the National Apartment Association (NAA). The MyCAA program offers career and employment assistance for both veterans and their spouses in the form of training to earn certificates and other designations focused to rental property management and or maintenance skills. This allows them to tap into the robust rental housing market that makes them more employable.
Hire a Veteran Program-The Liberty Group
At The Liberty Group, the “Hire a Veteran” initiative started in 2012, has enjoyed significant success, according to Shonna Schneider-Marquis, the company’s Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations. In addition to offering veterans free access to highly-desirable certifications, such as EPA Certification and Leasing 101. Veterans are offered career counseling in the form of interview preparation, resume development, strategies for finding jobs and other valuable skills.
As The Liberty Group’s president Ken Bohan notes, “We work closely with the employers to help shorten the transition time [for veterans]. They understand the value that veterans bring.” The Liberty Group uses their passion for helping veterans by providing innovative programs that are designed to give them lifelong skills and knowledge. With locations throughout the United States, The Liberty Group is poised to help veterans make a smooth transition from life in the military to that of a civilian. Contact them today to learn how they can help.