New job search tool for Indiana veterans 

By Mary Kuhlman
click to enlarge PHOTO BY MARY KUHLMAN
  • photo by Mary Kuhlman

After years, or even decades of serving their country, it can be difficult for veterans to find a job that suits them once they leave the service.

Against the backdrop of Veterans Day, state leaders are announcing a new online tool to help Hoosier vets in their job search.

Joe Frank with the Indiana Department of Workforce Development says their Virtual Career Counselor for Veterans matches military jobs with current occupations, and estimates the preparation time required to shift from one occupation into another.

"The government has paid millions of dollars to train these individuals in specialized occupations," says Frank. "When they get back home it's important they understand how they can transition those skills into a new job as quickly as possible so they're successful in their career."

Frank says post-9/11 veterans have had a particularly tough time finding work, but they, and others, can find person-to-person help at one of the 12 WorkOne locations around the state, where a veteran counselor can provide career advice, resume assistance, and courses on computer software.

Frank says the virtual counselor tool provides insight into the most in-demand, high-paying careers in the job market. At the moment, he says there are "great opportunities" for Indiana veterans in logistics. "Anything from truck drivers to management," says Frank, "Here in Indiana we're at the 'crossroads of America.' As well as manufacturing jobs, Indiana has been leading the nation in manufacturing job growth over the past year."

On Monday, Governor Mike Pence also announced Indiana awarded six percent of its state contracts to veteran-owned businesses, which Frank says is twice its goal.

"There's a goal that the state has to hire a specific number of veteran firms," he says. "They've been very successful in the past of keeping up that goal, and it's very important that we keep on with that goal."

Indiana is home to nearly 500,000 veterans.

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