Iowa needs skilled workers to fill immediate openings and anticipated retirements over the next five years. Our state has an average of 34,718 daily job vacancies and more than 100,000 workers are likely to retire by 2021.
Attracting and retaining military service members and veterans can help close the skills gap, provide high-quality careers and grow Iowa's population. More than 200,000 active military members leave the service each year. Of them, 83 percent have skills that are useful for the civilian job market, and 80 percent are willing to relocate for a good job.
Home Base Iowa, which the Legislature approved in 2014, is a workforce initiative that recruits military members, veterans and their families for career opportunities in Iowa. Members of the Iowa Business Council, an organization of Iowa's largest employers, have hired more than 2,050 employees through Home Base Iowa.
State Senator Steve Sodders
In addition, veterans released from active duty under honorable conditions are eligible for veterans' preference when applying for jobs.
This year, we voted to help veterans looking for work easily access job information on veterans' preference for public employment (HF 2415). Iowa Workforce Development will establish a clearinghouse to provide this information and enforcement of veterans' preference requirements. The bill won unanimous approval in the Legislature and was signed into law by the Governor on April 13.
The legislation was prompted by veterans groups, which requested a comprehensive review of veterans' preference in Iowa, including recommended solutions to more clearly define those veterans eligible for veterans' preference, the agencies to which veterans' preference applies, the process for appeals, and the agency responsible for appeals and enforcement.
Learn more about veterans' preference and other workforce services at www.iowaworkforcedevelopment.gov/veteran-employment-services. For more information on Home Base Iowa, visit www.homebaseiowa.gov