Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Colorado Department of Labor to Promote Veterans Services Via Social Media Throughout November


Daily postings will keep veterans apprised of opportunities and resources

November is “Hire A Veteran Month” in Colorado and during the next four weeks, the Department of Labor and Employment will be utilizing a targeted social media outreach effort to highlight services the agency makes available to veterans and employers.

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment has veteran employment specialists in workforce centers across Colorado connecting veterans with employment services including resume assistance, workshops, interviewing skills and more. During the next four weeks, veterans can turn to Facebook (www.facebook.com/coloradolabor) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/coloradolabor) to learn about jobs, find their nearest veteran employment specialist and engage with service providers.

Although at 7.0 percent, Colorado’s average unemployment rate for veterans (from October 2013 through September 2014) is down from what it was in years past, veterans unemployment is still well above the non-veteran population’s average unemployment rate of 4.3 percent.  More than half of the 231,100 veterans in Colorado’s labor force are veterans of Gulf Wars 1 and 2.

To target that demographic during “Hire A Veteran” Month, the Department of Labor and Employment will be launching an active social media campaign.  The Pew Research Internet Project cites 74% of online adults are using social networking sites and that percentage increases to 82% for people 30 - 49 years old.

This is the first time the Department of Labor and Employment has implemented a targeted outreach effort to Colorado’s veterans through social media.  “The Department of Veteran Affairs reports that the median age of Gulf War veterans is 37 years old, making social media the tool of choice for us in our outreach efforts,” explains Executive Director Ellen Golombek.   “Social media goes to where the young veterans are so that’s where we need to be in our outreach efforts.”

Every day during November, the Department of Labor and Employment will share veterans-specific content via its Facebook (www.facebook.com/coloradolabor) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/coloradolabor) channels including:
  • Daily “job of the day” posts
  • Veteran-specific events at workforce centers
  • How to connect with veterans employment specialists
  • Resources for re-joining the civilian workforce
  • Federal grants and services
  • Information on tax credits for employers who hire veterans 
In addition to Facebook and Twitter, veteran job seekers and employers interested in hiring them can also find information at www.hireacoloradovet.gov, a website created by the Department of Labor and Employment that links to services and resources including the state’s jobs database where veterans can search for jobs and where employers can post job openings.

“Helping veterans successfully maneuver the job search terrain is a key component of reintegration support and is a major part of Hire A Veteran Month,” Golombek says, “Social media has proven to be a great way to increase our outreach -- especially with younger generations who rely entirely on online resources for their job search.”

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