Any advice for civilian military spouses looking for federal employment? Or anything that is conducive to moving every few years?
Let me start by saying, as a fellow active-duty military spouse, I can empathize with this question. Finding federal employment is a great start to landing a job that can usually be easily transferred as your husband gets orders every few years. However, if you are like me, and many others, you may just be wondering “how in the heck do we break through the federal hiring process to get hired?” Well, here is the good news. The Spouse Education and Career Opportunities, or MySECO, is where you need to start. In addition to articles and tips to help you write a successful federal resume, you can speak with a career counselor at no cost. Career counselors can help you with your resume, offer interview tips and even help you decide what direction you want to take with your career. Seriously, visit the website and then give them a call.
I also highly recommend becoming a mentee in the Military Spouse eMentorship Program. They can connect you with a spouse that is already working in your career field. Your mentor is there to help you succeed through networking, sharing personal stories of the path they took to reach success in their career while being a military spouse, and offer career advice from the industry.
Please note that portable careers have evolved so much in recent years thanks to technology. If you have no idea where to even begin finding a portable career, check out “Portable Careers for Military Spouses” to get you started and help you think outside the “typical portable career box.” Telecommuting is becoming mainstream and companies and employees are eagerly embracing it. Depending on your career field, you may be able to talk to your current employer about keeping your job even as you PCS around the country or across the world. Be sure to notify your employer in plenty of time before your impending move and be prepared to present a game plan on how you think your position would work well as a telecommuting career. For example: do you just need an internet connection, computer, and phone to work? Sweet. Then show them how easy that will be to provide from your new location. How will you handle working in a different time zone from your company? Are you open to staying up late or getting up early? Tell them. Does your job offer flexible hours where you can work whenever works best for you as long as you meet your deadline? That’s even better news for you. Work this into your “this is why keeping me on will be great” speech. Remember to think about your proposition from your employer’s perspective and be prepared to answer those questions.
The good news is that military spouses make awesome employees and employers know that. So dust off that resume, brush up on your interview skills…your career awaits.