Finding a job that has hours that make for a healthy work life balance can be a challenging search for anyone of any background or qualifications, but National Guard and Reserve members have an even more difficult challenge, especially if you just came from active-duty or full-time Guard/Reserve duty. If you have a family to provide for, that only adds to your problems of prioritizing your time. How do you assuage potential employers that hiring you will be to their benefit, since you may be deployed or activated for some potential disaster or military conflict? Typically, you will already have to report for training once every two months, and employers are going to want a clear idea of your time commitments elsewhere. Sometimes, military commitments can be more frequent, and it all depends on where you are and what your duties entail. Employers cannot legally deny you a job based on your military status, but that won't prevent them from choosing to hire someone else, and they do not have to provide a reason. How do National Guard and Reservists find civilian work that is compatible with their commitments?
The first step is to prioritize your efforts. As a Reservist or Member of the National Guard, your time is already limited as it is. Also, don't commit financially to job placement organizations or websites that ask for a fee if it isn't within your budget. Do not just start applying for every position that you come across, as this will be a waste of your time and efforts. Remember, a one size fits all resume is not a good idea, as it can spread you too thin, and not allow you to zero in on your most important work experience and training. You want to present yourself as the most attractive candidate possible, so carefully review your experience, and figure out which industries would benefit most from your skills. Take the time to determine what types of positions you are qualified for and what jobs you are really interested in. Following that, narrow down the specific companies you want to work for, and determine if your commute will be convenient for you. Next, do your homework. You should research as much as possible about the organization you are applying to work for, so when you go in for the interview, you will present yourself as someone who is confident and informed. You should always apply for places that you actually want to work at, and not just for your own personal satisfaction, but because employers aren't going to pick someone who isn't motivated to work for them. It's common sense: are you going to hire someone who is just looking for "a job that pays the bills," or someone that has taken the time to carefully research their company?
When you do get called in for a job interview, make sure that you clearly communicate your time commitments to the Military, and provide your schedule as far in advance as possible, so your potential employer can know exactly when you are available to work. Also, be sure to remember that in the civilian world, people aren't accustomed to military lingo, let alone the use of military time. You must demonstrate that you can speak in civilian terms, and avoid military jargon.
There are plenty of jobs out there that allow for flexible work. You don't have to look much further than this website to find work in security that offers flexible hours. Choose civilian work that is ideal for you, in hours that you can handle, and when your military commitments are finished, you may find yourself on the inside track to a very promising career.