In the United States, more than 200,000 veterans transition from military to civilian life every year. Making the shift can be overwhelming in many aspects, but many service members report that finding a meaningful civilian career is their biggest struggle.
Often, service members have never had a non-military job and find it difficult to translate their military service into commercial terms that appeal to businesses looking to hire. Some simply don’t have a skill set that is in high demand where they live. And, unfortunately, many vets return home with emotional or physical challenges. So, despite their years of training, leadership and service, veterans often struggle to find and maintain lucrative employment. According to the Department of Defense, there were about 370,000 unemployed veterans in the US in 2017.
Here’s just one example. Robert, a Support.com Agent, served in the Army for 10 years as an Intelligence Analyst, deploying to Iraq on multiple occasions. When he returned home, he was determined to get a master’s degree in Information Technology, which he did. But according to Robert, in spite of the degree, the effects of his service-related PTSD — lack of focus, social anxiety, depression — became an obstacle to landing and keeping a traditional full-time job in the tech space.
“I decided to look for a job that would allow me to work from home and found Support.com. It gave me a way to work without all the distractions of other people and the triggers I was having in an in-office environment,” said Robert, who has now been with Support.com for two years.
Support.com has been providing tech support for 20 years and has over 1500 full-and part-time work-from-home tech experts from a wide array of backgrounds across the United States, including a significant number of veterans.
At Support.com, we have a remote support model for our agents. This allows us to create opportunities for a workforce that might otherwise be marginalized due to physical or emotional limitations, caring for children or family, being located in a remote area, or other reasons that make a traditional office work model a challenge. With no commute, flexible work hours, rigorous on-going training and a solid internal support network of team members, our tech support agents are able to work in an environment that supports their unique needs. Some have physical limitations that prevent them from driving or working in a normal office environment. Some like the ability to spend more time with their families after having spent so much time away, and still others live in rural areas where job opportunities are scarce.
“I struggle dealing with people face-to-face but with this job, I get the satisfaction of still being able to interact with people and connect with them, knowing that I’m making a difference in their day. I’ve seen and dealt with a lot. If I can take a customer who is yelling and screaming and by the end of the call we’re laughing and having a normal conversation — that is the part I love about this job,” says William, a former Navy service member who has been with Support.com for five years.
Derek, a Navy veteran, enjoys the flexibility of working from home so he can spend time with his family, saying “I feel a strong dedication to serving the person on the other end of the line. I want the customer to feel involved and important when I speak with them. I want to give the best of myself at all times.”
Another benefit that Support.com agents comment on is feeling like they are continuing their mission to serve people. “I might not be protecting them with a weapon anymore, but I’m still protecting their way of life. Technology has come a long way and it comes very easy to me. I feel useful in a world that seems to have forgotten about the casualties of war,” said Robert.
At Support.com, we value the leadership, service and technical skills that veterans can provide, and we strive to create a work environment that both supports and elevates them. And who benefits the most? The customers on the other end of the conversation. They have a team of tech-savvy, service-oriented, passionate agents who are on a mission to serve them.
Find out more about becoming part of the Support.com team.