Valuable skills most veterans acquire while on active duty are transferrable to a variety of careers once transitioned out of the military. That is why our Talent Acquisition team has a dedicated military recruitment team and strategy in place to actively network with military personnel to provide opportunities to gain real-world corporate experience with the potential for follow-on, full-time employment post-separation/retirement.
Liz Diss (McLean) is a Military Programs and Affairs Talent Acquisition Business Partner at Northrop Grumman. As a veteran herself, she has experienced the transition from active duty to a career in the private sector first-hand. She uses that to help ensure veterans joining the company feel supported and have a positive, seamless transition.
“I had been out of the military for several years working in the industry by the time I joined Northrop Grumman, but I knew this organization was one that would provide me with the purpose, mission and vision I was seeking,” says Liz. “My experience has allowed me to understand the value and GRIT that a veteran brings to an organization. Military members are the ones you want on your team – the skills learned while on active duty truly translate into a career in the private sector.”
With over 200,000 service members transitioning out of the U.S Military each year, veterans represent an important talent pool for Northrop Grumman. Military veterans are a major asset to our success as a company, and we are proud to employ more than 16,000 veterans, representing nearly 20% of our total workforce.
In 2020 and through the COVID-19 pandemic, our recruitment efforts continued. We hired over 750 veterans to our workforce, representing more than 22% of all new hires in 2020. There are several resources offered to help veterans successfully transition to new careers in civilian life.
- The Department of Defense (DoD) SkillBridge program provides transitioning service members with civilian work experience during their final six months in service. In partnership with the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Northrop Grumman offers no-cost internships to transitioning service members enrolled in DoD SkillBridge, with over 150 interns participating since its inception March of 2020. To date, we have hired more than 100 interns as full-time employees. The U.S. Secretary of Defense cited DoD SkillBridge as a top military veteran hiring program during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- VERITAS is an all-inclusive employee resource group committed to supporting the transition of military veterans and providing a supportive environment for employees who have family members that serve. Learn more about VERITAS here.
- In partnership with VERITAS and the Northrop Grumman Women’s International Network (NGWIN), we began a new initiative for women veterans called GRIT. GRIT supports both talent attraction and retention for women veterans. The mission of the group is to create a safe space for honest and transparent conversations that raise awareness, storytelling, education, and inspire attendees to find their voice.
- NG6 is a program worked in conjunction with Los Angeles County to assist homeless veterans in identifying employment opportunities and funding for housing. As a result of this partnership, Northrop Grumman hired over 25 homeless veterans in 2020.
- Operation Injured Military Pursuing Assisted Career Transition (IMPACT) is Northrop Grumman’s unique, award-winning program focused on hiring injured service members as they transition out of the military to a private-sector career. In 2020, we hired over 100 veterans through Operation IMPACT, the most in any calendar year to date. Read more details of Operation IMPACT on our corporate website.
Northrop Grumman participates in various career fairs throughout the year in partnership with Vets2Industry, Wounded Warriors, the U.S. Department of Labor, and multiple U.S. military bases. In 2020, we interviewed 237 candidates, resulting in 175 offers accepted.
This is a small snapshot of all the partnerships and support Northrop Grumman offers to military service members and veterans. We work to continue expanding efforts to make open positions more accessible to veterans. For example, in 2020 we piloted an effort to update our job postings by targeting several military-specific skillsets in the job descriptions.
We also began a partnership with Embry Riddle University to provide education and training as a primary hiring partner in their Aviation Maintenance Program. Embry Riddle is located on over 100 U.S. military bases and provides education and training to more than 15,000 active duty service members. Upon launch in 2020, the program became available at five U.S. military bases, with 16 people completing the 9-week course and resulted in five new hires in 2020. Looking ahead, we plan to add new skill sets to the curriculum and expand the program to additional military bases in 2021.
Military Recruiting Lead Brian Bilski was one of the individuals to spearhead the Embry Riddle University partnership. As a veteran himself, he understands the importance of working with the military community to offer education and training to those in active duty.
“Our organization is committed to hiring veterans because they understand our mission and already possess skillsets and leadership traits that can lead to successful careers at Northrop Grumman.” When asked about what he expects down the pipeline, he adds, “We plan to continue evolving our overall military recruiting efforts and develop talent pipelines in the military community to meet the needs of our business.”
Hear more stories from our military veterans as they share their journey of skills and lessons learned throughout their military careers and how they transitioned to work at Northrop Grumman. Additional resources and more information on programs and career support for veterans can be found here.