military veteran

From Combat to Cloud: Salesforce Retrains Vets for Computer Careers

3 minute read
Alexandra Borowitz avatar

As San Francisco returns to its version of normal after the record crowds and nonstop networking at last week’s Dreamforce, one partnership ― between Salesforce and Veterans2Work, a Novato, Calif.-based not-for-profit ― will continue strong throughout the year.

The mission? “Veterans2Work gets veterans back into the job market and handles the entire recruitment process from training to hiring,” according to Susi Leach, who was manning the organization’s Stars and Stripes-motif booth when I stopped by last Friday. 

From Armed Force to Salesforce

An Army vet herself, Leach counts Veterans2Work as a client in her role as a Principal at Cubic Compass Software. She explained that many veterans, especially in the San Francisco Bay Area, would love to find work in the challenging and profitable tech industry.

The genius of the matchmaking and networking opportunities that Salesforce facilitates at Dreamforce, according to Leach, is that many companies are eager to hire veterans who have the relevant mindset and training.

Beyond Basic Training

“We pre-screen for aptitude,” explains Leach. Then we support the vets to become Salesforce admins and developers,” she continued.

“Finally, we work with recruiting firms so we can hook them up with actual jobs. We are a full start-to-finish support system and our partnership with Salesforce allows us to provide all of these resources at no cost to participating veterans.”

Veteran Networkers

Leach’s enthusiasm was echoed by Justin Berkenstock, Veteran Recruitment Specialist for the Hicks Professional Group, a staffing firm that also partners with Veterans2Work.

Berkenstock proudly described HicksPro as a “certified disabled-veteran owned and operated business” and said that Dreamforce had been a great success for their booth.

Learning Opportunities

“It was actually very interesting to see how many people came to this booth interested in hiring veterans. There have been a lot of veterans walking around marketing themselves in the tech world. There are also CEOs wanting to know why a veteran would be a better candidate for them to hire.”

Professionalism on the Job

The benefits of hiring a veteran are numerous according to Berkenstock: “Things like trainability, reliability, dependability--a lot of abilities. Veterans have a certain level of professionalism.”

A hiring manager from DJM Sales & Marketing was just one visitor at the Veterans2Work booth who told me he was eager to hire veterans at his company in the year ahead.

So if all goes according to plan, by the time Dreamforce rises like Brigadoon next year, many vets who attended this year’s conference as job seekers will have found permanent employment working with Salesforce applications in cloud-based tech.

Title image by Benjamin Faust.