November 11th is Veterans Day, a time to honor the nation’s former military personnel. Every year more than 180,000 servicemembers leave the military to join the ranks of the nation’s 18 million veterans. When the troops transition back to civilian life, launching their next career — whether that means starting their own business or finding a job — is one of the first tasks at hand. Nearly 6% of all businesses are owned by veterans (according to the U.S. Census Bureau business survey).
If you’re a transitioning servicemember and budding entrepreneur, these resources can help you get started. The SBA’s Office of Veterans Business Development (OVBD) helps veterans navigate the agency’s programs, including connecting vets to funding; their Boots to Business program offers training in the skills veterans need to successfully own and run a business; and the SBA’s Veterans Business Outreach Centers (VBOC) offer business plan workshops, mentorship, and training. Find your nearest center.
Syracuse University’s Institute for Veterans & Military Families runs several programs for former military personnel, including Onward to Opportunity (O2O), a course of civilian career training and professional certifications. IVMF’s VetNet offers online networking, job opportunities, and entrepreneurship classes.
Whether you’re a veteran or not, if you’re a business owner and looking to hire veterans, start your search with the Veterans Employment Toolkit from the Department of Veterans Affairs or the Department of Labor’s Employer Guide to Hiring Veterans.
And finally, take some time to thank the veterans in your life for their service and sacrifice.