07/11/2013 11:27 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

More Employers Recognizing the Value of Hiring Veterans

With the unemployment rate currently sitting at 7.6 percent according to the latest report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, many Americans would be surprised to hear that there are currently 4 million jobs available and going unfilled. With more than 11 million men and women currently seeking employment, you would think that having 4 million open jobs is absurd. Logic says, give the jobs to those who are unemployed, and chop off at least 25 percent off of the 7.6 percent unemployment rate. If it were only that easy!

Many of the 4 million available jobs are highly skilled and professional positions such as engineering, I.T, and healthcare, and many of the unemployed simply do not fall into those categories. You hear every day about large employers like Facebook fighting for immigration reform that would allow foreign students who are educated here to remain here instead of returning home with the knowledge and skills gained here.

Many employers are also looking at other demographics to help fill their open positions, and one such group is the veteran population. Employers such as SAP, Google, and others are now developing training programs that would build on the skills and talents our Nation's finest have gained while serving in the military.

Veterans bring tremendous training, skills, and education to the workforce, and it should come as no surprise that the unemployment rate for veterans is and has always been lower than the national average

If you are fortunate enough to be in a position to have open positions, I would strongly encourage you to look to veterans first, and you will soon realize that it is not only the right thing to do, but also one of the best business decisions your firm will make.

On July 30th, VRS will connect more than 14,000 veterans with dozens of industry leading employers who recognize and value the skills and talent that veterans bring to the workforce, in the virtual career fair.