Veterans Research

Demystifying Veterans as a Hidden Talent Pool

Every year, thousands of highly skilled Veterans enter the job market—ready and eager for civilian work. Yet, despite facing labour and skills shortages, employers across sectors often don’t consider Veterans to be a viable talent pool.

Challenge Factory aims to close the gap between Veterans and employers. Through our consulting and research, we work to 1) raise awareness about the benefits of hiring Canada’s Veterans, 2) give employers tools that will make hiring easier, and 3) draw on Veterans’ knowledge to make sure we get it right.

Join Challenge Factory’s National Study on Hiring and Veterans

Hiring is not easy at the moment. Will you need to hire at least one employee within the next six months?

If so, we invite you to participate in our national study on hiring and military Veterans in small businesses. By participating, you’ll gain new hiring tools while contributing to the success of Veterans transitioning to civilian employment. Do good for your business, while doing good for others.

How do you sign up?

Send a quick email to Taryn Blanchard, Challenge Factory’s Head of Research, at [email protected]. Don’t forget to indicate which resource you’d like to explore!

This project is generously supported by Veterans Affairs Canada’s Veteran and Family Well-Being Fund. 

What will you be doing?

  1.  Explore one of three Challenge Factory hiring resources: a digital publication, online MasterClass, or podcast.
  2.  Complete four 10-minute online surveys over the course of a six-month period.

What will you get for participating?

To show our gratitude for participating, at the end of the study you’ll get:

  1.  Entered into a draw to win a 1-on-1 consulting session worth $2,500 with Lisa Taylor (expert, speaker, columnist, and Challenge Factory president) to help with your specific hiring and workforce challenges
  2.  Entered into a draw to win a one-year subscription worth $549 to Workforce Architecture, Challenge Factory’s digital magazine and rapid insight bulletins
  3.  Your name in the Acknowledgments of the study’s final report (if you choose)
  4.  Your company logo on the study’s marketing materials (if you choose)

What are the requirements for participating?

  1.  You plan to hire at least one new employee (Veteran or non-Veteran) in the first half of 2022.
  2.  You have not yet explored your hiring resource of choice, but will commit to doing so.

Which hiring resources can you choose from?

  1.  The Canadian Guide to Hiring Veterans
  2.  A MasterClass in Hiring: Tap into the Hidden Talent Pool of Canada’s Veterans
  3.  Hidden Talent: A Challenge Factory Podcast

Veterans and Small Business Community Challenge

The Veterans and Small Business Community Challenge is an experiential training program designed to accelerate and enrich the recruitment, onboarding, and hiring of Veterans by small business in individual communities across Canada.

The pilot, funded by ScotiaRISE, will bring together up to 40 Veterans and 40 business owners in the Belleville-Trenton, Ontario, area with a long-term goal of improving the income resiliency in both groups through knowledge and skills exchange and increased employment opportunities.

This project is currently in the launch phase. We’re looking for small business owners and Veterans in the Belleville-Trenton area to participate in a series of six learning modules to be held in March-April 2022: two with Veterans, two with business owners, and two combined.

MasterClass in Hiring: Tap into the Hidden Talent Pool of Canada’s Veterans

Challenge Factory’s free MasterClass is designed to help employers and hiring managers leverage the power of hidden talent pools, hire their next Veteran employee, and fill their labour and skills shortages.

Powered by the Centre for Career Innovation’s self-directed learning platform, MasterClass users gain access to five hours of interactive content that can be navigated at their own pace and in the order that best suits their needs and interests.

With a focus on shifting culture and capacity, the MasterClass builds on two key Challenge Factory publications: The Canadian Guide to Hiring Veterans and Retain and Gain: Career Management for Small Business. Users will walk away with bite-sized, proactive steps for building a reusable action plan that leads to skilled, sustainable hires.

This project is generously supported by Veterans Affairs Canada’s Veteran and Family Well-Being Fund. 

The Canadian Guide to Hiring Veterans

With the generous support of Veterans Affairs Canada’s Veteran and Family Well-Being Fund, Challenge Factory is pleased to present this new, easy-to-use guide to help employers find, hire, and retain Veterans. Free to download in PDF form, this resource offers:

  • practical, reusable tools for hiring Veterans (including a hiring checklist, interview guide, onboarding framework, and more);
  • myth-busting research about Veterans in the civilian workforce; and,

  • additional resources compiled in one convenient place for connecting with Veterans, job services, and other human resources tools.

The Canadian Guide to Hiring Veterans is designed for organizations with limited human resources and recruitment capacity that are striving to build strong, resilient teams that include Veterans who are skilled and ready to fill labour or skills shortages. Its second important purpose is to help destigmatize Veterans in and outside the workplace, and to clarify exactly why they make such a valuable yet hidden talent pool and recruitment source in Canada.

This Guide draws on Challenge Factory’s ground-breaking national research about employer hiring biases and the unique working style of Veterans. We use qualitative and quantitative methodologies to engage Veterans, small- and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), and large enterprises to explore:

  • perceptions about Veterans in the civilian workforce;
  • why employers in need of talent and Veteran jobseekers are missing each other; and,
  • lessons that can be learned from existing Veteran hiring programs.

A Question of Style

Does Veterans’ military service affect how they work in civilian workplaces? Do hiring managers have preconceived notions about Veterans? This first-of-its-kind study, generously funded in part by CERIC, identified important learnings for hiring managers, recruiters, and career professionals.