Frequent moves are a fact of life for so many military families who serve our country.
When the Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders come down and the moving date looms, it can be a stressful experience for the entire family. And for the spouse who has to give up a career and try to find employment in a strange town and an unfamiliar job market, moving can be especially difficult.
In a 2013 Military Spouse Employment Survey, 90 percent of female spouses said they were underemployed or overqualified for their positions. What’s more, military spouses reported earning 38 percent less than civilian counterparts, and they were 30 percent more likely to be unemployed. Respondents also said that frequent moves were a chief difficulty in finding employment.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way. There are a variety of resources and professional help options available to ease the transition and the job hunting process for military spouses during relocation.
Here are 5 tips that can get you pointed in the right direction:
Use social networking to showcase your skills and make connections. We often think of Facebook as a great social tool, but it’s also a nice way to build professional connections. Use it, and be sure to create and maintain a profile on LinkedIn as well.
Join support organizations that exist just for you. There are a number of great organizations who are dedicated to supporting the personal and professional needs of military spouses. Groups like Military Spouse and In Gear Career for Military Spouses have websites loaded with helpful content and they host dedicated groups on Facebook. Connect with other members and use these valuable resources!
Look for Military Friendly® companies. Check out the website for Military Friendly®, which recognizes organizations and businesses that set a certain standard in supporting people of the active duty, reserve, guard, veterans and military spouses.
Take advantage of unemployment compensation if it is offered. For example, Virginia passed a law in 2014 making military spouses who worked in the state eligible for unemployment assistance in the event they had to give up their job to accompany a spouse during a PCS move. Many other states now offer similar benefits.
Get help from a placement firm. Professional recruitment and staffing agencies like The Lee Group have unmatched resources and connections that enable them to place candidates in great jobs across a variety of industries, whether temporary or full time.
The Lee Group in particular has more than 40 years of experience and a highly personal approach, investing the time to get to know each candidate and their goals, which results in a great employment fit in the long run.
In addition, The Lee Group has three locations in Southeast Virginia, a region known for its large population of military families – and some of the firm’s own staff has proudly served in the armed forces too.
There is no search and staffing firm more qualified than The Lee Group to help military spouses find the best position possible, one that meets their needs and those of their family. Explore our site today to find open positions and submit an application.