100K Jobs Mission aims to hire 1 million vets instead

When the 100,000 Jobs Mission launched in 2011, officials weren't sure if that goal was too ambitious.

Now, they're aiming for 1 million jobs for veterans.

The coalition, which has grown from 11 companies to more than 200 over the last four years, also is rebranding itself as the "Veteran Jobs Mission," a move designed to reflect an enduring goal of connecting veterans with employers rather than just reaching big benchmarks.

Coalition officials say their job efforts so far have led to employment for more than 290,000 veterans. No timetable has been set for reaching the 1 million goal, but Brown said coalition members were anxious to set a new ambitious mark in lieu of another incremental increase."Regardless of the military downsizing and restructuring, there are 200,000 service members transitioning out every year," said Ross Brown, director of military and veterans affairs at JPMorgan Chase, one of the coalition's founding members. "So there's always work to be done."

The change comes at a time when veterans unemployment rates have sunk to their lowest levels in a decade, but segments of that population, including younger vets and minorities, still face difficulties finding jobs.

Brown said coalition members also are looking at retention and long-term career training for veterans they have hired, a natural extension of the group's initial efforts.

Companies are doing better at recruiting veterans, he said, but in some cases still struggle to make the process simple.

White House officials, lawmakers and advocates like the coalition have for years touted veterans as natural leaders and problem solvers with strong character.

"Now, I don't have to talk to our folks about the value that veterans bring," Brown said. "I'm just trying to help them access veterans."

For more information on the coalition's programs, visit its website.

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