Capital Region

Effort launched to connect employers, veterans in Capital Region

Center for Economic Growth seeks to attract, retain veterans to area

COLONIE — The regional economic development organization on Wednesday introduced a computer-driven employment initiative to retain veterans living in the Capital Region and attract new ones.

The Center for Economic Growth said its new Veteran Connect Center will be powered by JobPath software, a national employment platform for service members transitioning to civilian life.

CEG Veteran Committee Vice Chairman Joshua Toas said in a news release: “With JobPath, we are opening Capital Region employers to an untapped talent pool. When you combine that with the Veteran Connect Center’s concierge services for relocating military families, outreach to military transition offices across all branches and our enhanced online marketing of the region, we have a solid plan for ensuring veterans continue to play a vital role in the local economy and help it stand out on global level.”

Michael Swezey, chairman of the Veteran Committee, added: “In fact, we are already working with two military families who will be moving here by the summer and another who is considering it.”

Five-year estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau indicate that there were 31,577 veterans between 17 and 64 years old in the eight-county Capital Region in 2017, 24,828 of whom were participating in the civilian labor force.

The VCC’s services will include marketing the Capital Region to service members worldwide and providing relocation assistance; serving as the first point of contact for veterans already in the Capital Region and connecting them to the local career, educational and community services they need; and training employers and educational institutions interested in employing or enrolling veterans on military culture to assist with attraction and retention.

JobPath is one of the tools CEG will use to accomplish this. The software will give Capital Region employers access to the resumes of 200,000 transitioning service members and their spouses worldwide and enable them to do reverse searches for applicants based on their military occupation specialty code. Likewise, service members can look for local jobs requiring their military skillsets.

GlobalFoundries, Momentive Performance Materials, Transfinder, Stewart’s Shops, Fusco Personnel, SUNY Research Foundation, Columbia Memorial Hospital and Pinnacle Human Resources are among the companies that have tested JobPath locally and been impressed by it.

“For many company recruiters, aligning private-sector jobs to military occupational specialties has been a challenge,” said Mark German, director of staffing for GlobalFoundries Fab 8. “With the launch of JobPath, veterans will be able to conduct reverse searches by military occupational codes to find jobs that best match their skills, knowledge and abilities. This will be a very valuable tool for both employers and job seekers.”   

The Veteran Connect Center will host its first education session on attracting, hiring and retaining veterans Thursday morning.

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