Our Employer of the Week series features one company each week that has made a commitment to hiring and supporting veterans. This week’s employer is Smithfield Foods.
Smithfield Foods has been feeding families for more than 80 years with over 54,000 employees across the company and $15 billion in companywide sales in 2018. They also have a range of initiatives and resources to help veterans stick the landing on their first civilian job.
In 2017, Smithfield Foods launched "Operation 4000!" — an initiative to employ 4,000 veterans or 10 percent of the company's U.S. workforce. Smithfield employees also regularly attend military hiring events. Recently, the company stood up internal resources to help achieve its hiring goal including a dedicated military talent recruitment manager and support staff.
In Virginia, where Smithfield Foods is headquartered, Smithfield is certified through Virginia's Department of Veterans Services Virginia Values Veterans (V3) program. This program helps employers develop and implement long-term strategies for veteran recruitment and employment.
Beyond hiring support and initiatives, Smithfield Foods has programs to help veteran employees grow professionally. The Military Fellowship program is an 18-month leadership development program for high-caliber, recently transitioned military leaders. Smithfield's year-long Supervisor-In-Training program similarly helps veterans grow into new roles and responsibilities at Smithfield Foods.
"Smithfield believes it is the company’s responsibility to honor the service and sacrifice of American servicemen and women and their families," said Schwanzetta Williams, director of talent acquisition for Smithfield Foods, Inc. "Hiring military veterans is not only the right thing to do for the country but also the right thing to do for Smithfield. Many veterans seeking long-term employment address the company’s need for skilled workers with a technical background."
To learn more about the opportunities Smithfield Foods has to offer veterans click here.