Develop Inclusive Policies for Military Spouse Employees
After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:
- Develop strategies for military spouses employment continuity or company reentry.
- Relate how other companies have successfully hired military spouses.
Congratulations, you’ve made a military spouse hire. Now your attention will shift from hiring to retaining your new talent.
Ensuring that your new hire is connected with a mentor, either inside or outside of your organization, will help them transition into their role, especially if they had a break in work experience or shifted to a new career.
If you don’t have an internal mentorship program, Veterati is a free mentorship platform that connects military spouses to experienced professionals.
Does your organization have an employee volunteering program or want to create one? You’ve already learned that the vast percentage of military spouses participate in volunteerism (quick reminder: a whopping 70%). Depending on their personal interests, it can be a natural fit for your military spouse employee to participate in, or even lead, your company’s volunteering program. Participation can allow them to shine as a community-focused team player, provide them leadership practice for their career development, and help them build credibility and reputation within the company.
One of the most important actions a business can take in retaining military spouse employees is to partner with them to create an organization-wide policy, if one does not already exist, that outlines a career continuity plan in the event of a disruption due to military life. These disruptions include relocation and spouse pre- and post-deployment support.
- Identify potential career paths that allow nonlinear progress, remote work, or geographic moves.
- Empower and equip recruiters to recruit military spouses internally for key remote positions.
- Outline policies for employment reentry after family care leave or a long duty-related absence.
- Outline clear policies and allowance for military family leave, such as during a relocation and spouse pre- and post-deployments.
“The fact that the whole [Salesforce] platform is in the cloud makes remote working positions so much more accessible. When companies offer 100% remote work options, they are not only opening up the pool of candidates to the best anywhere, they’re also providing work/life balance and chances for growth that are hard to obtain in a location-based role.” —Skye Evans, Salesforce Consultant and military spouse
Tal Frankfurt is the founder and CEO of Cloud for Good, a certified B Corporation and an Inc. 500 company, that works with organizations to create and implement strategic Salesforce solutions.
“Here at Cloud for Good, we are honored to be part of the Vetforce Ohana. With four military spouses on staff, our virtual environment gives each of them the choice to stay and grow with our company regardless of where their spouse’s career takes them. Working remotely provides the ability for career progression and removes the stress of finding a new job with each relocation. Truthfully, we welcome relocation and even coined the term Cloud for Moving!” —Tal Frankfurt, Cloud for Good Founder and CEO
Erica McMannes is co-founder and COO of HireMadSkills, Inc. (MadSkills). In the past 17 years as an Army spouse, she’s found creative ways to find fulfillment and income that meshed well with the transient and unpredictable military lifestyle. Her career path started out traditionally in 2003, working for Army MWR/CYSS in various director and leadership positions. But in 2012, Erica found herself consulting for veteran-owned startups in Silicon Valley on community growth and branding development. After 4 years in the startup market, she launched out on her own founding HireMadSkills, Inc. in 2016. MadSkills enables companies to scale and manage their remote workforce while delivering remote work options to untapped talent pools of professionals (military spouses, veterans, and so on).
“Organizations are missing out on employees with heightened community awareness, grit, emotional intelligence, global experience, and mad skill sets. Being forced to adapt, overcome, and conquer time and time again develops truly unique characteristics that drive thriving communities and organizations. And it can be argued that the loyalty and dedication a military spouse will give an organization exceeds that of their civilian counterparts.” —Erica McMannes, MadSkills Co-Founder and COO