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How can I ensure to advocate myself in a way that will better my chances for employement, when translating my military experience for civilian employers?


James Bacon Searcy, AR

I posses a well written resume, but fear I will not be interviewed nor hired prior to my retirement.

13 October 2020 6 replies Military to Civilian Transition



Chip Brown Durham, NC

Hi James, You have an enormous amount of skills - leadership being a top one. I would say that if your profile reads like your resume you should add some very specific data on what you did to "achievement in creating and developing new efficiency strategies, quality control and process improvement plans resulting in explosive growth and business profitability." I would suggest you apply for the ACP mentoring program.


Jeff Martin Ashburn, VA

I’d suggest that you network at the target company or industry. Use LinkedIn to find people already working there and reach out to them. Ask them the process they used to get hired and ask them to help you navigate the hiring process and if they are willing, ask them to submit you as a referral. These activities require much more time on your part but in my opinion would greatly increase your chances for success. Good luck!


Doug Bohrer Northbrook, IL

If you send me your resume and email address, I would be happy to give you a practice interview. We can arange a time by email. I have helped several veterans with their resumes over the phone. It seems to work well. I'm retired, so I have time. I was a hiring manager for years during my civilian career.


James Bacon Searcy, AR

Jerry and Ed,

thank you so much for both the enlightening advice and direction. I have already been contacted by Arkansas DHS for education and administration coordinator positions. However, they informed me that I applied too early, and that I will need to wait until I am looked at more seriously. I suppose the good news is that I should be optimistic with regards to the several immediate replies for interviews. When speaking to my geographical challenges, I am retiring in my hometown and could not be more blessed to find myself in my current, concluding assignment. I believe I can be an asset in both managerial and administrative roles, but know that I must be employed in Little Rock so that I may attend law school part time at night. have been studying for my LSAT and believe that I will be capable of scoring a 160 n June. This will make me very competitive for a full scholarship.

However, my income must be over $53,000 annually to sustain my current costs of living, while reaching for my law school goals. That is essentially my predicament in a nutshell.


Jerry Welsh Middleville, MI

Msgt Bacon,
What career are you seeking a role in, education? That is what your TAG line on LinkedIn indicates and that is how you are searched. Without a career direction it is difficult for recruiters to know where to send you, as they do not understand what a first shirt does any more than what a sgt is in the first place. You have some great credentials, roll them towards a career, stay focused on highlighting your experiences towards that career. I would suggest connecting with Michael Quinn, a former CSM, who is very upfront about transitioning. I am giving you a could of articles for some basics. Thanks for your service and God Bless.
Good examples of “to the point” profiles are Mark Broc, PMP, SSGB, CSM and Jack Eisenhauer, Global Supply Chain. All have had long careers, but emphasized experiences and accomplishments that offer examples of the career they are searching for.


Ed Jasper Salem, VA

Thanks for your service and congratulations on your pending retirement!
The good news is, you are starting your transition thinking and planning a full year prior to your retirement date which should give you a chance to put a good plan in place. Instead of detailed advice at this point, I would pose the following questions.

Have you already signed up for a mentor with ACP? If not, this is the perfect time to establish a relationship that can help you with executing your plan. I think working with a mentor closely to help you navigate the transition, evaluating your resume, the interview process, salary negotiation, etc can be really valuable.

I saw in your profile that you have some idea what you want to do which is great but I would encourage you to explore/evaluate a few questions as you get ready to retire.

Do you know where you want to settle, what are the geographic restrictions which will have a impact on your options for employment?

Have you developed a detailed job search plan yet that includes the types of activities - attending job fairs, evaluating working with recruiters, participation in transition programs, etc.? This can feel like a full time job and takes a disciplined approach and is often best written out with some level of detail that you can track and manage your progress.

As a fellow Army retiree, I know this can be an exciting and challenging time, but you are off to a great start thinking about it a year in advance.

Good luck in your transition!

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