Stephanie Walton Stephanie Walton
Director, Digital Media and Communications


May 24, 2024


The Hiring Our Heroes 2024 Military Spouse Employment Summit was a powerful reminder that while military spouses are an asset to any organization, bringing in a wealth of adaptability, resilience, and diverse experiences that can drive innovation and success, they continue to face significant challenges and barriers to meaningful employment.

The Summit brought together a diverse group of allies and advocates from across the country to engage in meaningful dialogue about the urgent need to tackle military spouse unemployment. The event served as a call to action, reminding everyone that businesses of any size have the power to make a positive impact on the lives of military spouses and the workforce at large.

The Military Spouse Employment Summit Provides Actionable Strategies for Employers

Companies that embrace this talent pool benefit from their strong work ethic, loyalty, and the ability to quickly adapt to new roles and environments. These qualities not only enrich the workplace culture but also contribute to the bottom line by driving productivity and innovation.

“We’re closer than we’ve ever been to changing the narrative on military spouse employment. I can feel it. I feel like we’re at a tipping point,” said Eric Eversole, vice president at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and president of Hiring Our Heroes. “I haven’t been to a single military installation this year where the base leadership hasn’t said that military spouse employment is anything less than their number one priority.”

The summit's discussions led to several key takeaways for employers:

  1. Create remote and flexible job opportunities to support military spouse career growth. This flexibility not only aids in retaining talented military spouses but also signals a company's commitment to their well-being and professional development.
  2. Be aware of the challenges military spouses face with licensing and credentialing. Support license portability and advocate for standardized requirements to ease their transition into new roles within your organization.
  3. Establish targeted hiring programs and partnerships with military spouse employment initiatives. Utilize virtual career events, online career platforms like LinkedIn, and programs like the Military Spouse Fellowship Program to connect with military spouse candidates, tapping into their vast potential.
  4. Support military spouse entrepreneurs by considering their businesses for vendor opportunities and investing in them. Provide access to business resources and networks to help them thrive, which can, in turn, foster innovation and growth within your own company.

The Summit Shines a Spotlight on Military Spouse Employment Within the Healthcare Industry

At the Military Spouse Employment Summit, Hiring Our Heroes released groundbreaking research, Talent Injection: Military Connected Talent as a Workforce Solution for the Health & Life Sciences Industry, which examines the growth and talent shortage challenges in the pharmaceutical industry. The research revealed that 49 percent of active job postings in the pharmaceutical sector are in non-STEM disciplines, and with 88 percent of these opportunities requiring a bachelor's degree or less, the alignment with military spouses is clear—especially considering 8 out of 10 military spouses are willing to upskill or reskill to advance their careers.

Call to Action: Sign the 4+1 Commitment to Support Military Spouses

The Summit featured a powerful call to action for employers to participate in the 4+1 Commitment. This initiative encourages companies to create a more inclusive hiring strategy by committing to four key actions to support military spouse employment and joining an existing government spouse employment program. By joining this initiative, employers can demonstrate their commitment to supporting military families while also benefiting from the exceptional talent that military spouses bring to the workforce.

Hiring military spouses is not just good for business; it's a strategic advantage in today's competitive marketplace. By recognizing the challenges these spouses face and taking active steps to integrate them into the workforce, companies can unlock a reservoir of talent that is both resilient and ready to contribute. We urge employers to take the lead in this initiative, harnessing the power of military spouse employment to create a stronger, more diverse, and innovative workforce.

About the authors

Stephanie Walton

Stephanie Walton

Director, Digital Media and Communications