New Vet Jobs Bill Opens Up Business Employment for Veterans

This story is the first in a three-part series about how military veterans can take advantage of government programs to advance their careers.

Businesses are looking for former military personnel to fill their vacancies. And with the recent passing of the “VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011,” commonly referred to as the Veterans Jobs Bill, there’s never been a smarter time to pursue an online business degree to tap into the momentum for recruiting former military.

These new jobs are not the typical blue collar jobs advertised to service veterans. While the organization Helmets to Hardhats has done wonders for former military members, there has not been as strong of an effort to get veterans into white collar jobs.

Until now.

With thousands of tactically driven and problem-solving-minded former servicemen and –women entering the workforce, businesses are recruiting military to careers in accounting, sales, banking, communications and other white collar jobs. Then there’s the economic incentive driving companies to seek veterans to employ.

President Obama recently signed the Veterans Jobs Bill into law, which will give employers up to $9,600 in tax credits for hiring veterans. With 900,000 unemployed veterans, the bill will expand education opportunities, improve the transition from military life to the civilian world, help veterans turn military skills into civilian skills and, of course, provide tax credits to employers.

Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans of America Founder and Executive Director Paul Rieckhoff said this bill will get vets to work.

“We’re glad to see that Congress has finally realized that the smartest investment they can make is supporting the New Greatest Generation,” Rieckhoff said. “But, it’s important to note that, just like you cannot expect a young private to lead an infantry platoon into battle, people need training. That’s why an education is so important if you are a veteran eager to enter the business workforce.”

In a recent interview with NPR, Eric Spiegel, CEO of the Siemens Corporation, said that servicemen entering the workforce do not “fit neatly into the business world. …Yes, they have good leadership skills, yes, they have some technical skills…. Yes, they’ve got years of experience, but it’s not in a business environment for most of them.”

In early 2011, Siemens said it would fill 10 percent of its job openings with veterans. After those hired veterans performed exceptionally well, the company upped the number to 15 percent. Xerox, T-Mobile, Coca-Cola and Boeing are among the many companies that have executed strategies for hiring veterans. (See a full list of companies considered veteran friendly at

“What people are going to find is that this isn’t a charity – this is actually good for business,” Spiegel said.

So, with all this momentum for veterans in the business world, it makes economic sense for a vet to pursue an online business degree. Whether you are an active-duty service member, a weekend warrior, or a veteran of a foreign war or peace time, you can pursue a bachelor’s in business administration with specializations in finance, health care management, human resource management, informatics, leadership, management and marketing. If you already have a degree, American Sentinel University also offers a master of business degree online.

There is no shortage of opportunity. Improve your resume – and career – by advancing your education today with an affordable, accredited, online degree from American Sentinel University.