The Army Reserve is taking some unusual steps to bolster the ranks of citizen soldiers. Through its Employer Partnership initiative, the 195,000-strong force is establishing relationships with industry leaders to develop cross-credentialing programs and reciprocity of licensing so both entities can more easily share the same talent pool.
This week, the Army Reserve launched partnerships with the American Trucking Association and a nonprofit health care system in Northern Virginia to collaborate on recruiting and training efforts.
Lt. Gen. Jack C. Stultz, chief of the Army Reserve, and Knox Singleton, president and chief executive officer of Inova Health System, on Monday signed an agreement to join forces to recruit, train and employ health care workers.
The agreement opens opportunities for reservists to work at Inova's network of hospitals, urgent care centers, nursing homes and other facilities that provide home care, out-patient care, and mental health and other services. Together the Army Reserve and Inova plan to hire, train, credential, license and certify qualified soldiers who are entering health care professions.
"Business partnerships with respected organizations like Inova underscore the support America's employers continue to give the Army Reserve," Stultz said.
Also Monday, the Army Reserve announced a partnership with the American Trucking Association to collaborate on efforts to recruit commercial vehicle drivers for both organizations.
Stultz said the Motor Transport Military Civilian Partnership is "mutually beneficial" for both the trucking industry and the Army Reserve. The goal is to make it easier for active-duty soldiers leaving the military and reservists to find lucrative civilian jobs they can combine with a career in the Army Reserve.
Bill Graves, president of ATA, the largest trade group for the trucking industry, said: "Army reservists are ideal candidates for America's professional truck drivers. By the same token, the Army Reserve can offer qualified transportation professionals exciting opportunities to learn new skills, develop management and leadership abilities, excel in a high-stress climate, and work in a team environment."
The partnerships aim to benefit both the military and industry by sharing a pool of skilled workers with demonstrated discipline and leadership ability. The Army Reserve is a federal force whose members typically have specialized skills in combat support functions, such as medicine, transportation, law and policing.
In March, the Pentagon's most recent data showed the Army Reserve exceeded its accession goal by 121 percent.