Giving Back to Veterans–Our Commitment

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

As part of our Creating Shared Value approach, Nestlé USA is committed to hiring American veterans. Read about how that supports them and strengthens the company.

Kirk Butler, veteran and employee at Nestlé Waters North America
Kirk Butler, an Army veteran and Nestlé employee

Nestlé Professional prioritizes initiatives that enhance and support communities, families, and individuals as part of its ongoing commitment to Creating Shared Value

With more than 51,000 direct employees in the United States alone, these initiatives touch dozens of different areas—chief among them fostering an inclusive culture that enables all employees to bring their best to work. Nestlé believes that ultimately, this drives creativity and innovation, and helps the company win in the marketplace. Diversity & Inclusion initiatives include efforts to address gender imbalance; develop internship and training programs; and build a strong compliance culture, among many other activities.

In 2015, the company launched a program to address military veteran employment, with a 2017 goal of establishing Nestlé as an Employer of Choice among veterans.

Hiring veterans is more than an act of patriotism—it’s a strategic business decision.

  • Hiring veterans is mutually beneficial, providing employment to veterans and a skilled, disciplined workforce to Nestlé
  • Qualities gained in military service can transfer seamlessly to civilian life. Veterans possess valuable qualities including adaptability, resiliency, attention to detail, team player mentality and, in many cases, advanced technical training—all valuable skills to employers such as Nestlé

Our Commitment to Veterans

Nestlé USA offers numerous opportunities to veterans of the U.S. military, helping them use their unique training and skills within our organization’s various operating companies. In this way, veterans can continue contributing to the growth of our organization as well as our nation.

Nestlé in the U.S. employs more than 2,400 veterans across its various operating companies—including 415 hired since 2015—and is benchmarking veteran hires at 7% of all external hires.

Managing the Transition

Military veterans face unique challenges in transitioning to civilian life, including the need to seek employment, sometimes for the first time. Our commitment to creating a culture that embraces veterans in the workplace has been designed with that in mind.

At Nestlé USA, we prioritize matching veterans to jobs that utilize their specialized training and skill sets. This allows for both a smoother transition for the veteran and a benefit to the company in terms of shorter training time.

What We’ve Achieved

We hire veterans in many business areas, from human resources to shipping and logistics.

  • Heather, an Army veteran, now works with Nestlé USA in Solon, Ohio, and applies what she learned about keeping her unit safe to looking after the safety of her team in the workplace
  • Dan, a former Chief Aviation Electronics Technician in the Navy, believes strongly in the power of coaching people and developing the best of their skills, and has brought that expertise to Nestlé
  • Carmine, an Air Force Fighter Jet Mechanic who helped in the fight to overturn the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy, has brought the core value “service before self” from the Air Force to his work in Nestlé’s human resources team in California

We also recognize the importance of training obligations and a call to active service. We provide a variety of benefits that allow our employees to fulfill their responsibilities and attend annual reserve training or to answer a call to active duty.

Commitment Through Partnership

In January 2017, Nestlé USA formed two national partnerships with organizations dedicated to supporting our military and veteran communities: The Mission Continues and Hiring Our Heroes.

The Mission Continues (TMC) is a nonprofit organization that empowers veterans who are adjusting to life at home to find purpose through community impact. TMC mobilizes teams of veterans and non-veteran volunteers, called community service platoons, to solve specific challenges in their communities and inspire future generations to serve.

  • Nestlé volunteers are joining with veterans to serve local communities through service projects at the local level, such as improving school facilities
  • Nestlé is also participating in workshops for servicemen and -women to help them prepare for a successful transition into the workforce, while providing networking and résumé-building opportunities for veterans and active-duty members approaching their transition into civilian life

Hiring Our Heroes is a nationwide initiative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. Formed in March 2011, it is designed to help veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses find meaningful employment opportunities.

This partnership combines the resources of Nestlé USA with Hiring Our Heroes’ comprehensive understanding of the veteran employment landscape to provide diverse opportunities to transitioning servicemen and -women.

Moving Forward

These new partnerships build on the company’s ongoing commitment to U.S. veterans, with a focus on matching veterans to jobs that utilize their specialized training and skill sets. Kirk, an Army veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, now works for Poland Springs at Nestlé Waters North America and has applied the skills he obtained in the military to his new job. Butler brought his passion for helping others to Nestlé Waters in both big and small ways, and on Day One of his new career, cleared snow from the office entrance to help his new team get to work safely.

“I sustained a major knee injury while deployed in Iraq, an injury that forced me to leave a military career that I had prepared my whole life for,” Butler said. “Nestlé offered me an opportunity to transition my military skills and leadership, and learn a new career field, all while enabling me to develop highly trained employees.”

At Nestlé USA, our plan is to increase our focus and recruitment strategies on the veteran, active military, and military family populations. We will actively increase efforts to recruit, retain, and support this population, continuing in our commitment to ultimately create shared value for society.