Irving, TX-based La Quinta Inns & Suites says: Be ready to hire! If possible, conduct interviews at the hiring fairs. Contact the organizer of the event ahead of time to see if there will be an area you can use for interviews. This will allow you to have a personal conversation about the candidate’s experience and interests. Then you can tell them about your organization and why you value service members and their families. Ideally, have veteran and/or military spouse employees attend the fair to participate in the recruiting efforts.
Pam Webster, assistant vice president of talent acquisition at Enterprise Holdings, headquartered in St. Louis, MO, recommends that when you get a resume or application with military experience that you don’t understand, call the candidate to better figure out what their role was and what their accomplishments were. You may have to spend more time to assess whether the experience is a fit for what you’re hiring for, but it will be worth the investment for both you and the candidate.
Derek Blake of Irving, TX-based La Quinta Inns and Suites says the company recognizes its veteran, Guard, Reserve and military spouse employees with a special “thank you for your service” pin they wear on their uniforms. Each pin is unique to their military status. Recognition is important, and these employees truly appreciate the acknowledgment of their service. The hotel chain also provides “Gold” loyalty program status to veterans through its Military Rewards program. Jason Naper, a La Quinta general manager and Navy veteran, says, “The way La Quinta takes care of our veterans and active duty military is overwhelming—this drives my passion into high gear and makes me extremely energized to wake up and go to work every morning.”
Veterans and transitioning service members have more resources available to them in their job search than ever before. Human resources departments and recruiters play a critical role when companies make veteran hiring a priority. An inspired and educated HR and recruitment team can make all the difference in the hiring process for both veterans and employers.