GRAPEVINE, Texas — If carriers desperate for drivers are looking to hire veterans, they had better use online sites and social media to find them, an outreach and media specialist said during a presentation at the annual Truckload Carrier Association’s convention here this week.
“72 percent of the military [personnel] have one or more social media profiles,” said Christy Woynar, media strategist for Military.com, which advises trucking firms on veteran hiring. “70 percent of the job seekers on Facebook are male, and 63% of those are under 40.”
Military veterans looking for jobs do so with mobile phones, she said, so carriers need to learn to make their online applications one page only.
To tap the pool of veterans out there looking for work, carriers are going to have to retool their recruiting and hiring departments, she said.
“If you don’t have a person dedicated to hiring veterans, it’s time to get one now,” Woynar said, stressing that the person in that job will have to work largely on an online, social media strategy to find prospective hires.
Two hundred and fifty thousand military personnel return to civilian life each year, she said, and are looking for jobs. Woynar’s surveys indicate that a large number are willing to work in transportation as drivers or in related fields. They want to talk about careers, however, not just a job.
They are attracted to firms that can express why they value veterans in their workforce, she said, adding that just displaying a flag on a website is not a strong enough indicator of why a company wants veterans.
In talking to veterans, Woynar said, they discuss health benefits, job security and home time. If a carrier cannot give drivers scheduled time at home, then don’t advertise otherwise, she said.
Employment studies show that 76% of veterans are willing to relocate to get a job compared with 49% in the general job-seeking population, Woynar said.