Best Jobs for Veterans: High Salaries, Strong Demand

Best Jobs for Veterans: High Salaries, Strong Demand for Vets

If you are a military veteran, here is some good news. According to CNN, FOX News, and Monster.com, you are in demand. There are specific industries that pay the best salaries for veterans. These top paying industries have a direct correlation to a corresponding military designation. In this post, we’ll review the best jobs for veterans along with salary information.

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In fact,  according to CNN; “veterans are at least twice as likely as civilians to hold certain high paying jobs. Especially in industries like national security, technology, and transportation.”

In short, your Military Occupational Specialty can have a direct impact on your future. That is your Army Military Occupational Specialty Code (MOS). Your Navy Enlisted Classification (NEC) or your Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC). So make sure your MOS, NEC, or AFSC is clearly listed on your DD-214.

In our last article, we talked specifically about the steps you need to take before discharge. Making sure your DD-214 is completely accurate is step two in the article. By following this step, you can land yourself a great, high paying job like these:  

Best Jobs For Veterans

Best Job For Veterans No. 1 – Electrical Engineer.

Electrical Engineer (United States)
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Median Annual Salary: $71,100 as reported by Payscale.com.

Median Annual Salary: $95,230 as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics (BLS).

Some of the best training pipelines for Electrical Engineers exist in the military. In fact, the training is so specialized that you can choose to focus on one of several careers. You can focus on the Nuclear field. There is also avionics, and even radar or satellite communications.

One of the best direct correlations to this field is in the U.S. Navy. Try the United States Navy Electrician’s Mate (EM) or Aviation Electrician’s Mate (AE) rating.

Job Outlook: There were 315,900 job openings for Electrical Engineers in 2014. There is little to no change expected through 2024. As reported by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics.

Interested in a career in electronics?
We put together a guide that contains everything you need to know about an electronics career.




Best Job For Veterans No. 2 – Training Director.

Training Director (United States)
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Median Salary $85,000 as reported by Payscale.com.

Median Salary $102,640 as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics.

Training Directors in the United States tend to be well-versed in their field. To be competitive, you should have more than 10 years of experience. So it’s important to get that experience in while you are serving in the military.

If you are serious about becoming a Training and Development director, consider this.

According to the BLS, training and development managers plan, direct, and coordinate programs. With the specific purpose of enhancing the knowledge and skills of an organization’s employees. They also oversee a staff of training and development specialists.

According to the American Council Of Education (ACE),  the best career path for a Training Director is in the Navy. Simply earn the MTS designation. MTS stands for Master Training Specialist.

In fact, becoming an MTS earns you college credits. The ACE recommendations for MTS were as follows. Three semester hours in learning framework (lower division). Three semester hours in instructional methodology (upper division). And three semester hours in educational leadership (upper division).

Job Outlook.  According to the BLS; job prospects should be very good. This career field is expected to grow seven percent from 2014 to 2024. Look for opportunities in industries with a lot of regulation, like finance and insurance.

Best Job For Veterans No. 3 – Information Technology (IT) Director / Information Security.

Median Salary $106,000 as reported by Payscale.com.

Median Salary $131,600 as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics.

According to Nick Swaggert, who directs the veterans program at staffing company Genesis10,  

“It’s not all that surprising that veterans are often hired to direct a company’s IT strategies and infrastructure. Along with infantry and logistics, communication technology is one of the most common areas for officer training.”

“Communication is probably the single biggest thing we do in the military. Even more than shooting guns. All these different organizations have to talk to each other. They have to talk across different services and foreign countries. So, the number of communicators we have trained is really high.”

Computer and information systems managers are often called IT’s. IT’s plan, coordinate, and direct computer-related activities in an organization. They help determine the information technology goals of an organization. And they are responsible for implementing computer systems to meet those goals.

The best career path can be found in any branch of service. The United States Navy has the IT rating. As does the United States Coast Guard. The Army has MOS 25B, Information Technology Specialist. The Air Force has the Cyber Systems Operations Program.

Job Outlook: According to the  BLS, job prospects are great. Employment opportunities are projected to grow 15 percent over the next 10 years. This is much faster than the average for all occupations. Demand for IT managers will only continue to grow. Especially as firms increasingly expand their business to digital platforms.

Best Job For Veterans No. 4 – Senior Program Manager.

Median salary: $111,000 as reported by Payscale.

Median Salary $120,000 as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics.

According to CNN Money; “Veterans are almost seven times more likely than a civilian to become a senior program manager. This is an upper-level (senior) management position. Program Managers are in charge of specific projects within an organization.”

So why so much preference for veterans? Military veterans are often tasked with leading groups of soldiers at relatively young ages. And they are tasked to lead them in some of the most arduous conditions possible. That skill set transitions easily into into leading an office team.

According to Lisa Rosser.”Our officer corps tends to be very management focused. But our senior enlisted members also manage projects. Especially if they are in a staff position.  In the military we’re always managing something. Whether it’s people or projects. Or whether it’s  an exercises or a real world operation. You are managing a program of some kind,”

Lisa Rosser, served 10 years in active Army service and 12 years in the Army Reserve. She is the founder and CEO of The Value of A Veteran. A consulting and training company that helps companies with veteran hiring.

Any career path in the military would be a good choice here. In short, with the military you are going to get real world experience. Look for job ratings where managing programs is a key aspect of the job. Two great areas are the training department or operations department.

Job Outlook: According to the BLS; job prospects in this area are great. Employment opportunities are projected to grow 15 percent (or more) over the next 10 years. This is much faster than the average for all occupations.

Best Job For Veterans No. 5 – Vice President Of Operations / Logistics.

Median Salary $118,000 as reported by Payscale.

Median Salary $103,000 as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics.

With close to one-half of Supply Chain Managers in the United States reporting more than 10 years of experience, this career field is heavily weighted toward experienced professionals. And this is where you military training and experience is a huge asset. Especially if you have served in the Supply Department.

Most non-veterans in the work force just do not have the width or depth of experience necessary for this job. As a veteran, you can show clear evidence of your ability to manage complex operations. Especially in a real word and even wartime environment.

Nothing says “hire me” better than a DD-214 that shows operational experience in a combat zone. It shows you are capable of achieving success. Even in the harshest of environments. This is a sure sign of competence and capabilities. Or as they are known in the civilian sector – KSA’s (Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities.)

Job Outlook: According to the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor and Statistics; Employment of top executives is projected to grow 6 percent from 2014 to 2024, about as fast as the average for all occupations. Employment growth will vary by industry and is largely dependent on the rate of industry growth.

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