Top GI Jobs: Translating Military Experience Into Civilian Jobs

Top GI Jobs: Translating Military Experience Into Civilian Jobs

If you're currently serving in the U.S. military or about to end your current tour and transition to civilian life, then you must be thinking about what career to pursue next. The good thing is that many employers prefer to hire former military professionals because of their discipline, leadership skills, and extensive practical or field experience.

When you're in the armed forces, you've already passed a gamut of tests in order to even put on a uniform. Better yet, if you have the opportunity to obtain secret or top secret clearances, it can do wonders for your job search in your transition back to civilian life.

The Civilian Job Search

You also may be wondering how a military occupational specialty (MOS) that was perfect in a combat zone in Iraq or Afghanistan will serve you in civilian life. Even though it may take a little extra legwork, it is possible to find skills that can help in a number of sectors.

Take, for example, the many soldiers who help in reconstruction efforts in Iraq, Afghanistan, and even Haiti. Although many soldiers have an -11 or Infantry MOS, or perhaps armor or artillery, it's possible to flesh out the efforts made to oversee construction work, and even to provide security in building projects.

Upon returning to civilian life with this experience, you may find considerable opportunities in the civilian construction industry. This experience could also be applied to a career with a federal, state or local law enforcement agency, or in the fields of correctional or industrial security.

Retired from the Military: Top 6 Jobs

When it's time to "stand down", you'd like an easy transition, a lot of stability and a job that makes use of what you know. Here are the top 10 jobs as researched by Money Magazine and

1. Operations or Intelligence Analyst

A security clearance is the golden ticket to a job with a defense contractor. Intelligence and operations offer a diverse set of opportunities - even internationally! To be an analyst, a bachelor's degree and 4-7 years of experience in the field or in a related area is required.

2. Network Systems Manager

As a Network Systems Manager, you might manage network security systems or work on development, installation and modification of computer operating systems. Or, you might deal with security and telecommunications issues.

3. Field Service Engineer

As an engineer, you'll install, fix and maintain various types of equipment at sites around the country or even the world. This career requires a bachelor's degree in area of specialty and 6-8 years of experience in the field or in a related area.

4. Operations Manager Logistics

Logistics is a natural for vets, who have a good understanding of supply-chain procedures. There's a broad range of work choices, from warehouses to ports to shipping-company hubs to the circus. You'll monitor quality, cost and efficiency of moving goods (or tigers) from place to place and negotiate with customers and suppliers. This position usually requires a bachelor's degree with at least 8 years of experience in the field.

5. Senior Trainer/Training Manager

Technical trainers focus on equipment and computers. Business trainers touch on everything from procedures to branding. In addition to classroom work, you'll design and implement programs, as well as research new training techniques. A management position requires a bachelor's degree and at least 4 to 7 years of experience.

6. Construction Manager

A construction manager is responsible for the overall management of construction projects and may be required to manage projects in sectors all over the world.

For more job opportunities for veterans in Phoenix, visit

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