11.11.14 |
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Beyond a Tax Credit: How Hiring a Veteran Today Helps Honor Their Service and Build Your Business

Veteran's dayWe’re marking the turn of the calendar to Veterans Day, when we honor all people who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. And if your company is planning on hiring new employees, it may be time to take a serious look at actively recruiting veterans.

Military veterans often bring with them in-depth experience, technology training, leadership qualities, and the readiness to produce great quality work. Your business can leverage the qualities that veterans can bring to your organization with various tax credits and benefits that come from hiring a veteran, but in the end, it’s about thinking beyond your regular hiring pool to someone who has served his/her country and is ready to create a new life building a business with you.

Actively recruiting veterans can have its advantages, starting with the skills they can bring:

5 Skills Veterans Can Bring To Your Business

  1.  Leadership – Veterans had to take leadership roles quickly while in the service, demonstrating a respect for leaders, and then acting as leaders in various scenarios and assignments. You can expect a veteran to not only be ready for leadership, but to understand what makes a great leader and then demonstrate that on a long-term basis.
  2. Responsibility – When you are responsible for lives, coming back to civilian life makes the importance of the responsibilities in which you are entrusted crystal clear. A veteran understands that the work they produce is critical to creating a cohesive organization that is moving in a unified direction.
  3. Work Ethic – Veterans understand the value in working hard to complete tasks to build a greater whole.
  4. Technology Training – Many veterans have on-the-job experience with cutting edge technology and information resource management. Veterans may have specific technology skills that can be translated to fit a variety of tech needs inside your organization.
  5. Team focused – Veterans worked within teams filled with people from different backgrounds and cultures, and then had to work together to accomplish goals. A veteran is uniquely qualified to not just function on a team, but to bring teams together to help meet objectives.

Challenges Veterans Face When Transitioning to the Workplace

Military veterans sometimes face unique challenges when transitioning from active service to civilian life, which can include basics like building a resume that reflects their skills and experience and finding the right employment match.

While the military has updated and expanded its transition program to help service members be private sector career-ready, you may need to expand your own ideas of how a veteran could contribute to your organization by examining their experience with an expansive and inclusive mindset.

The overall trend surfacing in HR isn’t hiring based solely on a candidate possessing a specific set of skills against a job description, but to hire based on the skills a candidate already brings along with an apparent cultural and personal fit. You can often teach skills, but it’s typically harder to teach character and culture fit. Veterans may bring a varied and accomplished set of skills, along with demonstrated character, to an organization.

Forward-thinking managers and HR reps understand that even if a veteran doesn’t meet every qualification in a job description, military service often pre-qualifies them to learn new skills in rapid turnaround, with limited time and resources, even if they have been unemployed for a longer than usual period.

Veteran Tax Credits For Employers

In addition to gaining highly-skilled and proven workers, companies who hire veterans can take advantage of a number of available tax credits. These tax credits vary with veteran qualifications, such as:

  •  How long the veteran has been unemployed
  • The hours a veteran works
  • If a veteran has service-related disability
  • The state where your business is hiring

The practical considerations of veteran tax credits can be managed with the right software and a little research. Each state has a different process for securing the credit, so you should consider coordinating with your accounting team to make sure you’re filing the correct forms and with the correct agency

Tax credits are available in most states to employers who are willing to take a chance on a eligible veteran.  For example,Illinois offers companies tax credits of up to $5,000 a year (depending on hours worked, salary, and other qualifications,) for veterans of Operation Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, and Operation Iraqi Freedom hired after January 1, 2010 (IL Chapter 35, Act 5, Section 217, Section 217.1). New York State provides tax breaks for businesses that hire post-9/11 veterans after Jan. 1, 2014 and before Jan. 1, 2017, to full-time positions of at least 35 hours a week for at least a year (NY Section 210.23-a).

Here are a few other states with veteran employer tax credit options:

  •  Alabama – $1,000 for hiring unemployed veterans (AL Code Section 40-18-321, 40-18-322)
  • Alaska – $1,000 – $3,000 for hiring disabled or unemployed veterans (AK Section 43.20.048)
  • Delaware – Up to $1,500 for hiring certain medaled veterans (DE Title 30, Section 20A-101, Section 20A-102)
  • New Mexico – Up to $1,000 for hiring veterans (Uncodified Legislation, Ch 55 (HB 10))
  • Utah – Two-year credit for hiring unemployed veterans.  Credit amount is up to $2,400 in first year and up to $4,800 in second year. (UT Section 59-7-614.9)
  • Vermont – $2,000 credit for hiring unemployed veterans.  Hiring had to occur on or before 12/31/2013. (VT Chapter 151, Subchapter 11N, Section 5930nn)
  • West Virginia – Up to $1,500 for hiring disadvantaged veterans; up to $5,000 for hiring disabled veterans.; up to $1,250 for hiring unemployed National Guard members or Reservists. (WV Section 21A-2C-4)

Veterans can bring with them a variety of skills and benefits for your organization. With just a little legwork and an innovative mindset, you can start actively looking for veterans to fill open positions, which will help them start a new life and may give you significant financial benefits at the same time. There are many other details covering veteran tax credits, as well a myriad of federal or state options. To understand more about the current veteran tax credits that are available to you, and how you can collect them, please contact us.





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