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What should I know about private sector HR. How does it differ from military HR?

Veteran

Aaron Johnson El Paso, TX

Wondering if I should focus strictly on HR or broaden my horizons for more opportunities. I have 12 years of experience in the medical field, but it would mainly translate to EMS. I also have limited experience in Hazardous materials. The last 10 years were spent doing military HR.

13 January 2021 10 replies Career Exploration

Answers

Advisor

Brigitte Saria Highland, CA

Learning a new set of employment/labor laws and compliance rules and regulations is a difference. But all of that can be learned over time. The most significant difference is adapting a cultural mindset to a private sector organization from a military one. Use your skills in the military to assess the cultural landscape; observe and determine where the power, authority, control and influence resides in the private sector organization you plan to join or have joined. If you're new to a private-sector HR team, extend a helping hand. Form a study group to keep abreast of those ever-changing employment/labor and compliance information. You'll start off on the right foot with your new colleagues. You can learn from each other as well as have a gateway to learn about the organization's dynamics.

18 January 2021 Helpful answer

Advisor

Rex Conger Gilbert, SC

I also did HR at Great Lakes Naval Hospital (Not there any more) and when I got out I was able to get a position in Human Resources at Evanston Hospital in Illinois. And over the years as a Manager, VP and then CEO I have always been directly involved with HR,
The biggest difference is authority. In the civilian world you are hoping your employees are happy and want to work for your organization and in the military "they are there until their next duty site!" From a technology standpoint - perhaps different vendors but the same services are in place. Payroll and holiday/overtime pay is different - but that is about it. I would suggest you contact any hospital that is in a location where you would like to live and I'll bet they will be interested in you - perhaps starting out as a Assistant Director based on your background. If I can be of assistance contact me Rex D. Conger 815-922-1859 or rconger30@gmail.com

13 January 2021 Helpful answer

Advisor

Todd Cloutier Woburn, MA

Hello Aaron,

I work for Raytheon Technologies and can assist you with an Internal Referral for ANY position you would like, the organization is constantly hiring HR personnel. Message me if you would like to pursue this opportunity.

https://www.rtx.com/Careers/overview

Veteran

Aaron Johnson El Paso, TX

Hello Brigitte,

I appreciate the thoughtful feedback. This speaks much to what I’d to given my current status.

Veteran

Aaron Johnson El Paso, TX

Hello Melissa,

Best of luck to you as well!

Veteran

Melissa Herron Brandon, MS

I too am in a transition from my military position into the HR community. I am almost complete with my course through the IVMF program and currently preparing to take my pHR certification. I also have a background in the medical world. These responses were very helpful. I am a federal employee and it is challenging to break into other fields if you stay as a federal employee and I have hit many road blocks on the civilian side of life because despite my 18+ years of education, leadership schools and vast certifications- I lack private sector experience. I have faith the right opportunity will come along and an employer will see my drive and skill. Good luck!

Veteran

Aaron Johnson El Paso, TX

Dr Hank,

Thank you very much for your feedback.

Advisor

Henry ("Dr. Hank") Stevens Fort Lauderdale, FL

I support the comments made by REX CONGER! I too have been in healthcare Human Resources for decades (now retired). Your exposure to medicine places you heads and shoulders above other candidates for an H-R position in hospitals. Go get some informational interviews with the HRD / VP HR at your local hospitals. Contact me if you want to talk out issues. HLSTEVENS42@GMAIL.COM

Advisor

Chip Brown Durham, NC

There are significant differences in the regulatory and compliance parts of HR especially if you look a various Geos.

Veteran

Aaron Johnson El Paso, TX

Rex, thanks very much for the insight. I also sent a message to your email listed.

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