Walmart plans to give hiring preference to military spouses, becoming the largest U.S. company to make such a commitment, according to a statement. The Military Spouse Career Connection, a new initiative by Walmart to recruit and hire military spouses, complements the 2013 Veterans Welcome Home commitment, enhanced in 2015, to hire 250,000 military veterans by 2020, a goal it is on track to surpass next year.
According to a statement, Walmart has hired more than 1,000 veterans to date in NH and more than 212,000 nationwide since full implementation of the Veterans Welcome Home Commitment, and with over 32,000 veteran associates promoted since joining the Walmart and Sam’s Club teams, they are turning opportunities into careers.
“Walmart was a seamless transition for me as a Veteran,” says Steven Lee, Amherst, store manager and US Army Veteran. “I served as an infantryman in the US Army and working with a company with a clear chain of command and structure made it easy for me to succeed. I also take great pride in what my company does for Veterans transitioning into civilian life now. Since Memorial Day 2013, Walmart has hired more than 200,000 Veterans. I am proud not only to be a Veteran but proud to work for Walmart.”
Walmart honored veterans, their spouses and families across the country with dozens of in-store ceremonies and events. Nationally, Walmart associates and local stores shared Facebook “thank you” messages to veterans and their families.
“Military spouses are unsung heroes,” says Walmart President and CEO, Doug McMillon, today during a Veterans Day ceremony at the company’s headquarters in Bentonville. “They serve in partnership with their uniformed spouses, and we want to honor them and help them find a job or build an amazing career. To military spouses: You’ve got a home at Walmart!”
There are more than 500,000 active duty military spouses nationwide. While the U.S. jobless rate hovers at four percent nationally, military spouses face a 26 percent unemployment rate and a 25 percent wage gap compared to their civilian counterparts. A full 77 percent of these spouses want or need work, yet frequent relocation is often a barrier to finding and maintaining a rewarding career, according to the Department of Defense Military Spouse Employment Partnership.
“We have a duty to honor veterans and military families,” says Retired Brig. Gen. Gary Profit, senior director of military programs for Walmart. “But, more importantly, they are tremendous assets to our business. Military spouses bring many of the same leadership qualities we see in veterans, yet they are disproportionately unemployed. We welcome them to Walmart and hope they will consider us for the next step on their career journey.”
For more information about Walmart’s Veterans Welcome Home Commitment and overall support to veterans, service members and military families, visit walmartcareerswithamission.com