As Veterans are being deployed they are looking for ways to navigate from being a Veteran and either joining the workforce to becoming a business owner. There are several opportunities available to them here are two: National Veteran-Owned Business Association (NaVOBA) and Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Special Employer Incentives (SEI) Program. NaVOBA’s goal is to create opportunities for veteran-owned businesses and SEI is designed to help Veterans that are facing challenges in obtaining employment.
NaVOBA has several programs and resources available to Veteran business members from Vetrepreneur Magazine, franchise support, and contracting opportunities to Fortune 1000 Companies that ‘Buy Veteran.’ Vetrepreneur Magazine is the catalyst for the veteran-owned business movement that provides government, corporate and community endeavors throughout the world. Both NaVOBA and Vetrepreneur are the voices for veteran-owned businesses.
Special Employer Incentives (SEI) Program identifies opportunities for Veterans with participating employers. SEI helps to offset the ‘initial’ hiring costs. The contract is between VA and the employers who receive up to 50% of the Veteran’s salary for six (6) months for training costs.
Here a few benefits of the programs for Veterans:
- Increased chances of being hired permanently
- Income and benefits
- Ability to further use their existing skills or chances to enhance these skills through further training
- One-on-one support from VA Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor or Employee Coordinator
For More Information about the SEI Program: Contact: Susan Chung, Susan.Chung@va.gov or (202) 461-9615 and Vocational Rehabilitation Division or Point of Contact (POC)
1-800-827-1000. Both of these opportunities are the next steps in taking the Veterans to the next level from either employment to business ownership.
SBA is continually leading the charge in providing opportunities for disadvantaged businesses that could be beneficial for Veterans as well. The Presidential Innovation Fellows, pilot program-RFP EZ Project-was created to streamline the process for small businesses in helping to reduce the costs, paperwork and complications of doing business with the federal government.
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