GI Jobs asked the nation's 184 Military Friendly Employers® to list the top jobs they were recruiting America's veterans for. These are large employers that boast the best military recruiting and retention programs in the country. Here are the types of jobs, what they pay, what you do and what it takes to get them.
1. IT Specialist
Average salary: $69,903
Job description: IT pros cover a wide range of duties. Some design software and maintain systems for large corporations and government organizations. Some go into building mobile apps and websites or even designing video games.
Why it's hot: Most job titles within IT are expected to grow at rates between 15 and 20 percent over the next 10 years, according the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). What makes this ﬁeld particular attractive is the ever-increasing focus on network administration and cyber security in the corporate world.
What you'll need: While some IT positions require advanced degrees, experts say that certiﬁcation is often the most important qualiﬁcation. Many technical schools and even some companies oﬀ er training and certiﬁcation.
2. Operations Manager
Job description: Who’s in charge? They are. When it comes to plant, warehouse or other facility operations, these are the men and women tasked with making sure production runs eﬃciently.
Why it's hot: BLS projects operations management employment growth of 4.6 percent between 2010 and 2020. During that time period, an additional 81,600 jobs will need to be filled. Many of the growth jobs are in military-heavy states such as Texas, California, Ohio and Michigan, according to The Conference Board.
What you'll need: While many positions within industrial operations do not require degrees, people with bachelor’s degrees in industrial management or business administration should have the best prospects, according to the BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook.
Job description: They’re the brains behind every consumer product, vehicles, manufacturing equipment, electrical systems, and energy process design. And, that’s the tip of the iceberg. They also design safety systems.
Why it's hot: Engineers make the world go around—ﬁguratively, of course—but maybe one day they’ll literally ﬁgure it out. Who could doubt them? Engineers design everything from the products we buy to the machines that build them. Behind nearly every innovation is a team of engineers or some sort.
What you'll need: You’ll need a bachelor’s degree and perhaps a master’s degree if you want to be in management. You’ll need further certiﬁcation, but the type of certiﬁcation and licensing needed depends upon the type of engineering discipline.
Job description: Logisticians manage the entire life cycle of a product, including how it’s acquired, distributed and delivered. They work in nearly every industry and in fast-paced environments. They are responsible for making sure supply chain operations run productively and eﬃciently.
Why it's hot: Logistician jobs are projected to grow 22 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations. Logistics plays an important role in the global economy, and with a need to move goods around the globe in short order, that role is not about to diminish any time soon. Job prospects should be best for those with a bachelor’s degree and work experience related to logistics.
What you'll need: Although an associate degree may be suﬃcient for some logistician jobs, a bachelor’s degree is typically required for most positions. Industry certiﬁcation and work experience in a related ﬁeld can be helpful for job seekers.
5. Customer Service Manager/Rep
Job description: No, it’s not all about listening to complaints. Customer service managers oversee the process of handling orders and helping customers by providing information on an organization’s products and services. They manage the personnel on the front lines of a company and dictate how they handle relationships with customers.
Why it's hot: There is expected to be a 13 percent increase in customer service jobs over the next 10 years. Telephone call centers, also known as customer contact centers, are expected to add the most new jobs for customer service representatives. They are projected to grow 38 percent from 2012 to 2022, much faster than the average for all occupations.
What you'll need: A high school diploma is usually enough to get a job as a customer service rep. There is usually short-term on-the-job training, lasting two to three weeks. Those who work in ﬁnance and insurance may need several months of training to learn more complicated ﬁnancial regulations. They also may need speciﬁc certiﬁcation or licensing.
6. Manufacturing Technician
Job description: These aren’t your father’s factory jobs. Technicians in a manufacturing plant or other facility ﬁx and maintain high-tech equipment such as robotics, electronics and wireless services and equipment. They work on the assembly line; they keep the line running smoothly.
Why it's hot: These are hard positions for employers to ﬁll, according to a recent study by Manpower Group. Companies recovering from the downturn are bouncing back but investment in training is still lagging behind. So they’re looking to military-trained workers who already are trained in highly specialized STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) ﬁelds.
What you'll need: Certiﬁcation is usually required and varies among positions. In general, post-secondary technical education coupled with military training can help veterans move up the ladder quickly. Often, a military certiﬁcation will be relevant for civilian employment.
7. Skilled Tradesman
Job description: From welding to bricklaying to carpentry to working on an oil rig, skilled tradesmen perform specialized labor functions for a variety of industries. Skilled tradesmen work in manufacturing plants on production lines or with specialized businesses catering to consumer customers.
Why it's hot: Skills! Training for most trade skills ranges from a few weeks of technical school or on-the-job training to several years of combined technical school and on-the job training. Roustabouts need to be in good physical condition. While a high school diploma is not always required, it does help secure a position.
What you'll need: Skills! Training for most trade skills ranges from a few weeks of technical school or on-the-job training to several years of combined technical school and on-the job training. Roustabouts need to be in good physical condition. While a high school diploma is not always required, it does help secure a position.
8. Business Administrator
Job description: These are the junior executives and management trainees. They have management responsibilities for sales, budgeting, new business development or product development, to name a few areas. They are often being groomed for upper management.
Why it's hot: As Baby Boomers reach retirement age, many companies and organizations are faced with a need to replenish their top management. Many train their next leadership through junior executive and management programs designed to fill those future voids.
What you'll need: Advanced degrees are common, depending on the business field. For many U.S. corporations, junior executives have an MBA or at least advanced business training from an accredited business school. Small businesses may base their leadership choices on intimate knowledge of a business.
9. Sales Rep
Job description: They are the face of a company to new customers and existing customers. A sales rep presents the benefits of products and services to potential buyers and clients of a business or organization. Sales reps negotiate prices and research new business opportunities.
Why it's hot: Sales manager jobs are projected to grow 8 percent from 2012 to 2022. Employment growth of these managers will depend primarily on growth or contraction in the industries that employ them. The best opportunities are expected to be at independent agencies, which operate on a fee basis and represent several client companies.
What you'll need: A bachelor’s degree helps, but it’s more important to have a positive personality and the ability to ask open-ended questions to understand the customer’s need. Some scientific and pharmaceutical sales positions may require specialized knowledge and/or advanced degrees.
10. Finance Services Pro
Job titles: Don’t worry, it’s not all about number crunching. Some financial professionals work in accounting, but others work as insurance agents and go into the field to assess damage from accidents. Financial planners work in the exciting world of investments where high-stakes decisions are made in an instant to better a company’s or a client’s financial position.
Why it's hot: Money makes the world go around. There is a 16 percent job growth expected for financial planners and analysts. Financing decisions are also becoming increasingly regional, which contributes to more growth areas for financial pros, according to the BLS. Overall the financial services industry is expected to grow by 5 percent between now and 2022.
What you'll need: Jobs in financial services generally require at least a bachelor’s degree and some require an MBA, as there is a need for a thorough understanding of markets and business processes. Most accounting positions require CPA certification. Insurance agents do not usually require an advanced degree.
Want to see all top 20? Check out the rest of the list over at G.I. Jobs