3 Things Veterans Should Look for in a Civilian Employer

Jon Salmons
4 min readMay 24, 2018


At Nestlé, we’ve found three things that are essential to helping veterans thrive. No matter where you end up, here’s what to look for during your transition process.

According to a survey conducted by Prudential Financial and IAVA, three in five veterans worried about “how to translate their military skills to a business environment.” The survey also found that “veterans are most concerned about finding a job that is meaningful to them.”

Transitioning from military to civilian life often presents challenges for members of the armed services. Often times, as a veteran, when you are ready to look for new work opportunities, you may feel unprepared or like you don’t know how to identify “the right job” for your skillset.

At Nestlé, we believe that military values like a sense of purpose and mission, collaboration, and agility, can cross over into a civilian work experience. And what’s more, we know that veterans and transitioning military members make Nestlé better. The experience and skills veterans bring to the table is a natural fit for us, and we believe our purpose-driven company culture is a natural fit for them.

Through Project Opportunity, we’re supporting veterans with employment and training opportunities, which build upon their already impressive skills. We’re proud to employ 2,400 veterans across Nestlé USA, Nestlé Waters North America, and Nestlé Purina, who are welcomed and rewarded at Nestlé.

Whether veterans find their next opportunity at Nestlé or somewhere else, here are three things to look for in your transition to the civilian workforce.

1. Your military background is celebrated

At Nestlé, we deeply value the experiences and skills that veterans bring to the workforce. Veterans contribute strong skills and values to our company, such as integrity, perseverance, and discipline. At Nestlé, a military background is always an asset and never a setback.

Read Lisa’s Story

“My initial experience applying for work [before I found Nestlé] was strange, I was really grilled about why I went into the military, it seemed to play against me and it was an interesting transition period. That was different at Nestlé — I was 7 years out of the military when I applied here, but even in the interview process the gratitude and accolade for my service was incredible.”

Lisa — Army Veteran, Human Resources at Nestlé Waters

2. You’re constantly learning

When transitioning into civilian life, veterans sometimes find difficulty in adapting to an unfamiliar work structure and new cultural norms.

Read Patrick’s Story

Veterans who choose to work at Nestlé after completing their service find that they have the opportunity to broaden their horizons, while still working in a well-organized environment.

“In the military you always know what you’re going to do ahead of time, there’s so much structure. Here I’ve found that I don’t always know. You get called to do different things, and that’s a strange adaptation. I’ve actually found that to be a relief — constantly learning, constantly doing something new — that really suits me.”

Patrick — U.S. Army Reserves, Maintenance Mechanic Apprentice at Nestlé USA

3. You get to work collaboratively with your team

We know many veterans understand the value of teamwork and how diverse teams can collaborate to achieve common goals. Nestlé has created a company culture where collaboration is key. Veterans are helping to take our teamwork environment to a new level.

Read Jessica’s Story

“Less than three months after starting with Nestlé, I was deployed to assist with Hurricane Harvey, with only two days’ notice. My manager, Esther, was very supportive and immediately began to prioritize my work load within the team. I felt bad as an employee for having to drop my work, but my team and my manager understood why it was important for me to go.”

Jessica — Active Military Reservist, Raw Materials Specifications Specialist at Nestlé USA

Are you looking for a career opportunity where you can use the skills you gained during your time in the military? Do you have a friend or family member that is a veteran and would be a great fit at Nestlé? Follow in the footsteps of many of our employees and explore our career opportunities today!

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Jon Salmons

Vice President, Recruiting — Nestlé USA