Transitioning from military service to a civilian career is a huge life change. To borrow a phrase from some veterans, you “need a lot of runway” to successfully land in a satisfying civilian job. It takes self-analysis, market research, networking and, of course, job applications and interviews. It can also involve completing additional training, obtaining new skills certifications, completing internships, transferring professional licenses and obtaining new security clearances.
Consequently, transitioning military members are well advised to give themselves that long runway in the form of ample time to plan and execute their move to civilian life. Although the focused job search typically occurs 30-90 days before completing military service, experts advise service members to start actively planning their transition nine to 12 months before leaving the military.