White House launches Web 2.0 tools for veterans job search

Administration collaborates with Google to tag job openings for vets and make them searchable

Driving the White House’s launch of a new veterans job bank, job search widget and other online tools this week was a major collaborative effort involving Google, LinkedIn, Twitter and other Gov 2.0 players.

The Veterans Job Bank and Job Search Widget debuted on Nov. 7 with more than 500,000 private-sector job opportunities for veterans.

With more than 12 percent of post 9/11 veterans reported to be seeking employment in October, President Barack Obama has said that assisting veterans find jobs is one of his priorities.

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The veterans job bank and widget work together: Employers tag online job listings pertinent to veterans to create the online directory, and the widget combs through job boards, social media networks and corporate sites to locate the tags.

The technology that makes the new veterans job bank possible is a new Web standard, the JobPosting technical schema, which is a structured data standard designed by private-sector volunteers and supported by the schema.org structured data group sponsored by Bing, Google and Yahoo.

“For employers committed to hiring veterans, “tagging” job listings in the JobPosting schema ensures that those listings will be discoverable through the Veterans Job Bank,” Aneesh Chopra, federal chief technology officer, wrote in a blog entry.

“Starting with Google’s custom search team, the Veterans Job Bank was conceived and then implemented in less than 90 days,” Chopra added.

The job search widget is available for free and can be added to any website.

Other collaborators in the widget and job bank project included job search companies SimplyHired.com, Monster.com, Military.com, Indeed.com and Taleo.com.

Other elements of the White House veterans job initiative include:

  • LinkedIn is sponsoring Veterans HackDay on Nov. 11, inviting developers to create new applications that benefit veterans.
  • BranchOut, a professional community Facebook application, is offering opportunities to veterans to utilize job networking tools on Facebook.
  • Twitter, through TweetMyJobs, is providing a job search service on Twitter.

In addition, on Nov. 11, the Veterans Affairs Department is set to introduce its VA for Vets online job board listing more than 3,500 jobs at the VA. Also, the VA recently said it would add job-related data to its online Blue Button electronic health record application.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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Reader comments

Mon, Nov 14, 2011 Becca Virginia

Its not even a nice try. It doesnt do anything. Why would somebody write a newspaper article about this Its better for vets to go to VA or careerbuilder because they at least work. THIS is the thank you that we get for being Vets. What a crock.

Fri, Nov 11, 2011 Will Virginia

The Veterans Job Bank is either broken or is designed wrong. I am a Supply Officer in the Air Force and it says the best job for me is "Manager,Storage Engineering, Collaboration Storage Group, will be responsible for all aspects of engineering and operations of the Storage and Data Protection platforms for Cisco Webex." Again, I am s SUPPLY OFFICER not a computer scientist!

Fri, Nov 11, 2011 Soldier/Sailor/Airman Unemployed in Your Town

This is half-assed, sloppy and doesn't do what it advertises. Who do I blame? The usual suspects Labor and VA who get millions to help Vets and provide USELESS (and probably expensive) transition training and job hunting help? Or do I blame the White House who views military men and women as cannon fodder and vets as war-food who escaped their destiny? The friggin' system is actually broken!

Fri, Nov 11, 2011 Earnest Atlanta

I guess that you could call this "Strike 2" for the administration. For example, the MOS-based search doesn't bring back jobs that are REMOTELY relevant and the "Suggest a Site" page does not work (I tried it on three different browsers. I sent a "Contact Us" note and received a response back from a PR firm stating that this site is not done, it was launched in BETA! "Thank you very much for your inquiry. This is very much an initial, Beta version of the Veterans Job Bank that will evolve greatly over the coming months as we address concerns such as yours. We are in the process of identifying ways to make the MOS feature more accurate in its identification of particular specialties. I have forwarded your feedback on to our IT team so that they may make the appropriate modifications.

Please feel free to contact us at any time if you have additional feedback. Thank you!

Matt Vidulich
National Resource Directory

Thu, Nov 10, 2011

As the links in the first paragraph clarify, it is actually a Google custon search engine that combs through job boards, social media networks and corporate sites to locate the tags. The widget allows any website to put the Veterans Job Bank on their site.

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