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Finding a Job for a Military Spouse: What Skills should you Focus on?

Military Couple

Military spouses are perhaps some of the most resilient professionals in the workforce. They’re constantly shifting locations, adapting to new people and environments. That demand for flexibility is what makes having a military spouse job so unique. While it can be challenging at times, you’ll find that being married to someone in the military comes with an abundance of benefits. You’ll build lifelong friendships with other spouses, have access to career resources and receive numerous benefits as a military spouse. If you and your partner are considering relocating for his or her next assignment, read on for helpful advice regarding military spouse jobs!

Know your job search rights as a military spouse

One of the most important things to remember as a military spouse is that you are legally entitled to favorability when applying for a job. You have the right to request a flexible work schedule, telecommuting hours or other job modifications if necessary. This is true whether you’re actively searching for a job or if you’re in the process of finding a new position with your current employer. If you are already employed, talk with your Human Resources representative to see how you can apply for a job modification. If you’re currently unemployed and looking for a job, make sure to put your job search rights in the forefront of your mind. Be upfront about your situation and ask hiring managers if they’re willing to work with your situation.

Network like crazy

Military spouses often find themselves in a position where they need to transfer careers. It could be because of the normal movement associated with the military life, or perhaps the need to follow a spouse to a new assignment. The good news is that the career transition process is actually fairly easy for military spouses. The Department of Defense actually has an expedited Transfer of Skills process that can be used by military spouses who need to change careers. The first step in this process is to build a network of people who are either currently in the field you’re interested in, or who have recently transferred from that field. Not only will these connections help you find out more information about the career, but they may also be able to provide you with inside tips on how to get your foot in the door.

Stay flexible

As mentioned above, military life is inherently flexible. You’ll need to stay open to different types of jobs and different types of locations. While you may want to use your transferable skills to pursue a specific field, you may also want to stay open to new opportunities. Being flexible can help you and your family navigate an uncertain and often unpredictable future. If you pursue a career path that is too specific, you may be putting yourself in an awkward situation when it comes time to relocate to a new base.

Develop transferable skills

One of the best ways to stay flexible as a military spouse is to develop skills that are transferable. Not only will these skills make you more attractive to hiring managers, but they’ll also open you up to a wider range of job opportunities in general. Some examples of transferable skills include: – Technical skills: If you have experience in IT, engineering or other technical fields, you’re already ahead of the curve. These are in high demand in the civilian workforce and will give you the flexibility to work from home and telecommute as you see fit. Language and cultural skills: Are you fluent in a language other than English? Do you have experience living and working in a different culture? These are very valuable skills that can be used in a variety of industries.

Find the right fit

As you’re looking for a new job or a career shift, the best thing to do is to find a position that is the “right fit.” If you pursue a position that isn’t the right fit for your skills, you’ll be miserable and you’ll likely lose interest in the field quickly. If you use the tips above to find a position that is the right fit for your skills, you’ll be much more likely to stick with the job and be successful.

Conclusion

Military spouses are an incredibly special group of people, and they bring a special skillset to the workplace. If you’re a military spouse, you know how to survive and thrive in uncertain situations. You’re flexible and resilient, and you know how to navigate uncertainty. All of these skills will help you find the right job for you as a military spouse.

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