Last week, the President’s Council on Veterans Employment announced that in FY 2014 the percentage of veteran new hires within the federal government hit an all-time high of 33.2 percent. This is up from 31 percent in FY 2013.

It was the first time in the five years since the Veterans Employment Initiative was created that the number of veteran new hires increased in the same year that overall new hires also increased in the executive branch.

“I am confident that together this council is doing what is needed to achieve the president’s objectives and establish the foundation for ongoing and sustainable progress for our veterans for years to come,’’ said U.S. Office of Personnel Management Director Katherine Archuleta, who is also vice chair of the council.


The goals of the initiative are three-fold. First, it aims to help federal agencies identify qualified veterans. Second, it helps clarify the hiring process for veterans who are seeking employment within the federal government. And third, it tries to help veterans adjust to the civilian workforce after they’re hired.

During the March 23 meeting, the council also decided to add measures related to women veterans and diversity to their strategic plan for the year. The measures will be linked to their current plan’s existing goal areas of leadership commitment, employment, marketing and information gateway.

“We know that veterans possess character, team-building skills and discipline. Those traits don’t stop when we take off the uniform. They transfer into the workplace and help their businesses grow and succeed,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs and Council Co-Chair Robert McDonald. “For us in VA, where more than a third of our employees are veterans, that means providing better outcomes and better service to their fellow veterans.”

Currently, the council is co-chaired by Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez and Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert McDonald. The council consists of 24 Cabinet level and independent agencies.    

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Jennifer Cary is a freelance writer, blogger and former government employee. You can visit her website here.