How to Make Your Transition from Military to Civilian Life Easier

You’ve served your country and you are proud of your service. But, now you’re ready to return to civilian life. Use these tips to make your transition from a military to a corporate career easier.

Translate Your Military Experience into a Civilian Resume

Often, hiring managers aren’t familiar with military terms. Therefore, you’ll have to explain your experiences in a way regular people can understand. Try to focus on accomplishments rather than job descriptions. And, avoid military jargon. For instance, with job titles, write “Operations Manager” instead of “Operations NCO” or “Team Leader” instead of “Squad Leader.”

Focus on Your Transferable Skills

Your military experiences will be extremely valuable in the civilian world. However, you may need to market those transferable skills. Begin by making a list of everything you learned during your years of service. This may include accountability, adaptability, ingenuity, leadership, patience, precise communication, problem solving and teamwork, as well as the ability to stay calm under pressure. Then, read through job descriptions and look for overlap. Let’s say you are interested in a management position. Then, highlighting assignments where you successfully directed a military team would show your potential for serving as a leader in the corporate world too.

Look for Military-Friendly Employers

Not all businesses recognize the benefits of hiring veterans, but fortunately, many do. Search online for military-friendly or veteran-friendly companies. With these organizations, you may discover both an easier hiring process and a better culture fit. For example, Home Depot offers a Military Skills Translator Tool on its career page, while Deloitte supports company-wide initiatives to positively impact the veteran community.


You probably made lots of connections during your time in the military. So, track down those who have made the transition already. Your comrades can provide job-searching tips and career advice. Plus, they may even know about open positions.

Partner with a Recruiter

If finding a civilian job still seems overwhelming, don’t worry. Rather than struggling through your search alone, connect with a local staffing agency. A professional recruiter can help you translate your skillset, highlight your strengths, identify your best-fit opportunities and land that job. And, since recruiters charge companies not individuals, you can receive all this expert advice at no charge.

Would You Like to Make Your Transition from Military to Civilian Life Easier?

FirstStaff is proud to match veterans with top career opportunities in Little Rock, Arkansas, and beyond. Our professional recruiters will work diligently to assess your military skill set so we can find you the right civilian job. Learn more about our personalized hiring process today!


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