Does your community have a strong military presence? Do you have talented military spouses, dependents, and veterans seeking local employment but struggling to find an existing business with the right employment opportunities? The 2016 Creative Give Back Project developed a concise action plan to raise awareness in the business community about the benefits of hiring former military and military spouses.
The 2016 Give Back was awarded to the Wayne County Development Alliance. Their proposal was to develop an influencing model to encourage businesses to hire military spouses and former military. The project began in May 2016 with brainstorming sessions, surveys, and interviews to help us better understand the disconnect between the military labor pool and the business community. By late fall, after significant research and in depth analysis, a final implementation plan with multiple recommendations was presented to the Alliance.
Action plan recommendations include:
- Establishing a local military friendly designation program that will point former military and military spouses in the direction of businesses that are open to hiring them.
- Partnering with NC4ME and the USO in North Carolina to implement a local hiring and employing troops program.
- Incorporating seminars on telecommuting and job sharing into the local business and retention program.
- Expanding the promotion of the Career Readiness Certification program to the military base.
- Engaging the military base with annual business events that tie in the Airman and Family Readiness Center, Military Friendly Certification, and Base Entrepreneurs.
- Institutionalizing the programs so the projects will stay active when the champion moves on. Institutionalizing the programs mentioned above is a great way to present a consistent message over a long period of time and make sure the ball doesn’t get dropped.
One important aspect of Give Back projects is that they have the ability to replicated in other communities. We believe what we learned in Wayne County will be beneficial to many communities across the country. For a copy of the full report/findings, click here.
We are now accepting applications now for the 2017 Creative Giveback project. The only criteria are that the project must be creative, innovative, have the potential for economic transformation, and have a demonstrated need for consulting support. Full details and application are on our website.
What is your creative idea in 2017?