When you’re a Military Spouse who travels or makes regular PCS moves as a standard part of your everyday life, it can make the effort involved in finding a career, or part-time employment, more difficult (or just feel like it!) than the challenges typically faced by the average job seeker. Luckily, there are organizations ready and willing to assist you. We recently spoke with the creator of America’s Career Force for some expert guidance. Here’s what she had to say about finding a career as a Military Spouse and how America’s Career Force can help.
What is America’s Career Force and why should people care? America’s Career Force is a company dedicated to connecting businesses offering remote job opportunities with America’s Military Spouses seeking remote employment. Military Spouses are passionate about the American Dream and live their lives supporting that ethos. Our national strength hinges upon a strong military and a strong economy and yet we are too often a forgotten component of the workforce equation. The military family unit is supported through financial stability. Military Spouses move too frequently to be able to have a traditional career and contribute to the family’s financial stability. Remote careers are the key to professional success for Military Spouses and the well-being of the military family unit.
What lit the fire in you to start this talent firm? How did you come up with the idea for America’s Career Force? I have been a Military Spouse for 13 years and moved 10 times. I am quickly approaching my 11th move, my second overseas. As an Army Spouse I have lived in remote locations with limited access to job opportunities. While living in D.C. I was fortunate enough to be invited to work remotely. I realized there were many opportunities like this but remote opportunities aren’t readily advertised. I knew, from experience, remote careers were the key for Military Spouse success. I decided to fix the unemployment problem Military Spouses face myself by connecting companies that want to hire Military Spouses with those highly qualified Military Spouses.
What motivates you and keeps you going? I’ll answer this with an example of an email I received because this is what I hear from spouses on a regular basis. “My sister who resides in Washington, D.C. sent me an article on what you two are doing for the families of our nation’s military last night. This article brought tears to my eyes. All of your words completely resonate with the frustrations I am currently feeling. I am a 23-year-old Army Wife and I have moved twice with my Husband in less than a year. I have a college degree. I had wonderful grades in school and yet the moving and lack of knowledge of the areas we move to has killed me in the job hunt. It’s demoralizing. Yet, you two are a bright beacon of light on the job front. I do not want a job, I want a career. I want something that’ll make me happy when my Husband is gone for almost a year in the Middle East. Thank you for your efforts. Please let me know if there is any way I can get involved.”
What have been some of your biggest challenges in achieving your vision of having Military Spouses in every business? One of the biggest challenges we face is our ability to get the word out to America’s businesses. We find that America wants to support Military Spouses in any way they can but they struggle to find us. We are challenged with trying to inform America’s businesses we are out there making that connection for them.
On the flip side of the coin, what has been your biggest success thus far? Our biggest success to date is having one of our spouses hired by a Fortune 500 company. That spouse was hired for a different job but because of her incredible talent and their commitment to hiring Military Spouses she is leading an internal campaign to educate the HR managers and team members within the company about the challenges Military Spouses face and how they can benefit from hiring Military Spouses.
Who has been your biggest motivation/motivator? My biggest motivator changes on a daily basis. Yesterday, it might be Heather, today it might be David and tomorrow it might be Lindsay. Each and every day I hear from spouses around the world seeking remote careers. These spouses are accountants, educators, engineers and lawyers. They have dedicated significant time and resources into a career but because they fell in love with a servicemember they shouldn’t have to give up a part of themselves as well. I know there are remote job opportunities out there for them, I just have to find them. They are my biggest motivators.
How do Military Spouses stand apart from other job applicants? Military Spouses are adaptive, organized, resilient and loyal. They live each of these values each day through the events that their family unit encounters supporting our Nation’s heroes. The Military Spouse is hungry, they know what it means to be challenged and they welcome that challenge. They understand that defeat is never an option. They are hard-working motivated professionals dedicated to our country and their family. Although a Military Spouse resume is eclectic and lacks longevity employers will find their loyalty and dedication is unmatched.
What are your top 3 best pieces of advice for Military Spouses who want to enter the workforce?
- An updated resume is key. Being ready whenever duty calls is quintessential.
- Don’t underestimate your qualifications. Military Spouses are known for staying out of the limelight but they need to embrace all they have done and highlight those accomplishments on their resume.
- Be willing to start in an entry level position with a company that offers the opportunity to have a career. You will prove your worth and move up.
What does a Military Spouse need to do to join America’s Career Force? We are currently working with Military Spouses with an undergraduate degree and beyond. All they need to do is contact us and let us know what their career goals are and we will take it from there.
How can more individuals and businesses get involved? We are asking businesses across America to Hire Just One Military Spouse for remote employment. We understand not every job is suitable for remote employment however, every business has at least one job that can be accomplished remotely. We are simply asking for that one job to be filled with a Military Spouse. Individuals can help us spread the word and businesses can contact us to find out how they can find and hire a Military Spouse.
Do you have any career advice or job-search tips you’d like to share with other Military Spouses? Let us know by commenting below.