UPDATED: LinkedIn Goes to Bat for Job-Searching Military Spouses; Expands Premium and LinkedIn Learning to Give Us Competitive Edge

Update: Have you been wondering how to sign up for LinkedIns new program for military spouses? Sign up for a free year of LinkedIn Premium every time you PCS via linkedin.com/military, and make the most of what LinkedIn Learning has to offer.

Original Story:

LinkedIn is on my good side (not that it’s ever been on my bad side, but for the sake of being dramatic, allow me to have my moment), having forcefully joined the battle against milspouse unemployment with today’s major announcement.

I wouldn’t say I’m an avid LinkedIn user. Despite my failure to take proper advantage of its myriad of services, though, I can honestly say the platform has been good to me. It has given me the “down-low” on companies and interviewers alike, informing my own elevator pitch before interviews, it has landed me interviews through its Job board, put me forth as an excellent candidate to interviewers who first scope out social media during the hiring process, helped me connect (professionally) with former clients and co-workers, and even garnered this blog a few views.

If you’d asked me before today, I wouldn’t have been able to give LinkedIn its due assessment. But, in light of the company’s most recent announcement and this blog post, I found myself reflecting on its usefulness. And I’m giving it all the kudos today. Why? Because LinkedIn is offering military spouses* free access to LinkedIn Premium.

By the way, instructions for enrollment are here. Basically, you must enroll through your My SECO account with the Department of Defense (DOD).

From LinkedIn and Dan Savage, Head of LinkedIn’s Military & Veterans Programs:

A new move can bring new opportunities. Now military spouses can get the training and access to flexible, freelance, or remote work opportunities to help with their career transitions via LinkedIn’s Military & Veterans Programs.

Why is this a big deal?

Research indicates that military spouses are four times as likely to be unemployed as their civilian counterparts, and 90% self-report being unemployed or underemployed. In fact, the DOD cites the frequent moves from base-to-base as the No. 1 barrier to economic opportunity for our community.

In response to this issue, the job-finding giant has finally “established a partnership with the Department of Defense’s Spouse Education and Career Opportunities Program to offer one year of LinkedIn Premium and LinkedIn Learning every time a military family moves, and again when their family departs military service. This will provide access to a newly-created LinkedIn Learning path designed to support remote work and freelance opportunities.Finally, we’ll be supporting DOD’s growing military spouse LinkedIn group to seed an active community in the model of our successful Veteran Mentor Network, and will be notifying military spouse-seeking companies of how to use recruiters to find and hire this important segment. With 650,000 spouses of active servicemembers and with the military family moving every 2-3 years on average, this new partnership has the potential to impact up to 220,000 military spouses annually.”

Here’s a peek into what you can expect from LinkedIn Premium:

LinkedIn Premium, Military Spouse LinkedIn

And here’s a view of the (my Premium) dashboard:

This doesn’t roll out until July, but you can take advantage now of the 30-day free trial.

Now it’s your turn to spread the word, like I just did. Not sure what to share? Try reposting one of the following links:

What do you think? Will you be taking advantage?

More info about what to expect here.

*Check to make sure you meet criteria (PCS’ed recently or have a spouse preparing to exit the service).

This is the first post in a series about launching your own business.

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