Your Best Tech Bet: Hire a Vet

By Ed Silverstein March 09, 2012

Technology companies are among the enterprises that being recognized and encouraged to hire veterans who have served in the American armed forces. Big players like Microsoft and Google were recognized so far for their efforts to hire U.S. veterans, according to a recent report from Mashable.

Verizon is another company which has been singled out for its commitment to hiring veterans. And General Electric Co. plans to hire 5,000 veterans over the next five years, according to a report from TechZone360.

In the broader picture, an advocacy organization called “America Wants You“ has started a marketing campaign to encourage executives from diverse fields to hire veterans. It has released a video featuring Chris O’Donnell, who has starred in “NCIS: Los Angeles” and “Batman.” America Wants You also recently purchased a full-page ad in The Wall Street Journal to get its message out.

America Wants You – citing estimates from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics – says there currently are some 800,000 unemployed veterans. America Wants You wants to remind corporate leaders to give them priority in hiring.

“With over 800,000 veterans out of work, it is imperative that companies step up and help those who have been helping us,” America Wants You CEO John Pike told MediaBistro. “It’s a corporate call to arms.” Pike is a veteran who also was president of Paramount Network Television.

One recent estimate says that some 30 percent of veterans, ages 18 to 34, are unemployed. The national unemployment rate is about 8.3 percent – or higher if it is refined to include more workers not included in the recent government estimate.

In addition, more than 220,000 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan are out of work, according to a report appearing last December in The New York Times.

When it comes to technology, Mashable says the vets are “well equipped to work in the tech sector – many vets are skilled in computer security, SQL and troubleshooting.” As an added plus, employers could get a $9,600 tax credit for hiring veterans. There is also a push to hire the spouses of veterans, Mashable adds.

Another advocacy group, 100,000 Jobs Mission, also has been pushing to get companies to hire veterans.

Edited by Jennifer Russell

TechZone360 Contributor

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