Blue Cross and Strategic Staffing Solutions: Teaming Up to Help Veterans Transition into a Career

by bcbsm

| 2 min read

When veterans leave active duty and look to transition to a civilian job, it can be hard for them to get their foot in the door. In fact, more than half of veterans say they have trouble explaining their military experience and skills to future employers. That’s where a staffing agency can help - they are able to fill their clients’ open spots with talented veterans, creating a win-win situation. And that’s exactly what Strategic Staffing Solutions does for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Ever since 1995, Strategic Staffing Solutions has helped place employees throughout Blue Cross’ many departments. However, a few years ago, they turned their focus to making sure veterans were being utilized whenever possible. “Veterans are very good at adapting to different environments, so they make great employees,” says Colonel Ken Huxley, director of talent acquisition for Strategic Staffing Solutions. “In the past few years we’ve placed close to 200 veterans and military spouses in open positions across the country.” One of those veterans is Maurice French, a retired naval officer who now works in the IT production office at Blue Cross. “I was a lieutenant commander in the Navy for eight years, where I worked in naval intelligence and was deployed to Greece, Czechoslovakia, Thailand and Japan,” he says. “When I left the Navy about 30 years ago, I began working in IT. And about a year and a half ago, Strategic Staffing Solutions placed me here at Blue Cross. Now I am a senior project manager where I help keep major projects moving along.” French’s military service has helped him become a better project manager. “The military has such discipline and makes you think strategically,” he says. “In the IT space at Blue Cross, I need to analyze problems, work out solutions and come up with backup solutions in case the first ones don’t work. The military also gave me a chance to interact with people from a lot of different cultures and learn how to work out conflict in a team, something that is especially useful to me here.” For more about how Blue Cross focuses on increasing its veteran employees, check out these other blogs:
Photo credit: US Army Africa

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Blues Perspectives

Nov 17, 2016 at 3:26am

Hi Jeff, We thank you for your service and will most definitely pass along your feedback to leadership. Thank you, Taylar

Jeff Bordui

Nov 16, 2016 at 9:09pm

Iam a veteran of 15 years. I retired as a SFC while in the military I served in numerous leadership positions. From a 1st Sergeant to the Monetary Incentive Manager for the Michigan National Guard. I have applied for numerous leadership positions, only to be looked over as I watched someone less qualified as I, get hired for leadership positions. So I think that in order for veterans to be properly utilized, based off their military qualifications, BCBSM recruiters, and hiring managers need to be better educated. I started my Military Career, as a Military Police Officer, and ended my career as a Personnel Sergeant. I also have a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration. Is it because I am over qualified? I have the qualifications to Direct, Manage, or lead and operation here at the Blues. One of our President and CEO goals for this year was to reduce administrative cost. What a great way, promote from within the organization, will save a great deal of administrative cost corporate wide.

MI Blues Perspectives is sponsored by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association