When I first became an Army spouse it was of the general consensus that you should keep this (and the fact that you were married at all) a secret until you were hired.
“Don’t wear your wedding ring to the interview!”
“If they asked why you moved just say it was for family.”
This advice I heard so long ago is utterly useless today. Here’s why.
3 Reasons You May Want Your Potential Employer To Know You’re a Military Spouse
Some Companies Are More Likely To Hire A Military Spouse
Yep, you read that correctly. Every military spouse event I have been to in the last year has been sponsored by at least 1 company that has a program for specifically hiring military spouses.
Former First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden created a program called Joining Forces in 2011. Its initiative was to bridge the civilian-military divide by bringing awareness to companies of the need for jobs for military spouses. Without this initiative, the old advice might still be true.
Though the current administration dismantled Joining Forces, the ripples of the program continue to grow as companies such as Capitol One, Starbucks, Comcast NBCUniversal, Verizon, FedEx, La Quinta, CarMax and CVS (as well as many more) look to hire military spouses.
For those in need of remote jobs, websites like MadSkills provide a link exclusively for companies and military spouses.
If You Have Kids, You Need Flexibility
Your deployed spouse cannot come home on an emergency 14-hour flight if the 3 year old has the stomach flu and you have a presentation in the morning.
If you’re lucky enough to live near family you may have emergency help, but last-minute babysitters are hard to find and daycares won’t take kids that are puking up their guts.
If your daycare is closed on an arbitrary Friday, you have to find child care for that day or take leave from work (which many jobs don’t allow within the first 90 days).
You need a company that is going to understand what you’re going through and allow you to work from home occasionally or have flexible hours.
You Don’t Want To Work For A Company That Wouldn’t Hire You If They Knew
If a company would look past your resume and specifically not hire you because you are a military spouse, that is a company you don’t want to be at. Despite being an illegal practice (though no one could prove they were doing it) it’s simply a large warning sign that this workplace will not be family friendly.
Finding a job that makes you happy and works for your whole family is important and putting it out there in the beginning that you are a military spouse can help you find that.
Look for companies that are willing to care about their employees as much as they want their employees to care about their products or services.
Do you know of other military-friendly companies? Share them with us!