Hiring Our Heroes: An Interview with Veteran and Former HOH Fellow, Matthew L.
By Andie T., Specialist, Talent Acquisition
Schwab is proud to partner with Hiring Our Heroes, a corporate fellowship program dedicated to empowering not only veterans, but members of the U.S. military and military spouses succeed in the civilian workforce after they leave the military.
One of these veterans who went through the program himself is Matthew L., a native of San Antonio, Texas and a member of Schwab’s HR Consulting team. Three days after Matthew graduated high school, he joined the Marine Corps and never looked back. However, after serving in the military for 21 years, Matthew found himself trying to answer one burning question: “What do I want to do when I grow up?” Hiring Our Heroes and Schwab helped him answer that question.
Matthew: Hiring Our Heroes (HOH) is a US Chamber of Commerce program that runs several cohorts per year composed of about 750 transitioning service members (fellows). HOH places fellows with host companies across the U.S for a 12-week corporate fellowship program. It’s a little bit of a matchmaking process for fellows to be matched with host companies but the process begins with a mass resume release being pushed out to about 500 companies. During a very short time window, we interview with multiple companies, some small, medium, and large for roles that they intend to hire for if we meet or exceed their expectations during the fellowship program. The host companies interview and rate the top fellows and the fellows also rate their top companies. The HOH regional program manager takes care of the actual company/fellow matching by aligning the top fellow and company matches. Many service members pursue companies like USAA, Wells Fargo, Amazon, Bank of America and Verizon due to their huge military outreach programs. To be honest, I didn't know a lot about Charles Schwab until right before the Hiring Our Heroes application window opened.
I learned about the Hiring Our Heroes program at Schwab after meeting two members of the Schwab Talent Acquisition team via LinkedIn. These two amazing ladies introduced me to Schwab and the culture that makes this organization outstanding. Every interaction I had with them impressed me with their professionalism, timely communications, and genuine enthusiasm for guiding me through the HOH application process which led me to choose Schwab over my other host company offers.
My favorite memory of the HOH program at Schwab was meeting the HR leadership team and learning about the scale of the HR work taking place in so many different areas of the organization. These 1:1’s with key HR leaders made a huge impression on me and solidified my decision to pursue a career at Schwab following my HOH fellowship program.
My favorite part of the program was being onboarded by Beth F. and Andy F. who both served as my guides during my 12-week fellowship. These two seasoned HR professionals facilitated a rigorous onboarding program that kept me engaged and rapidly integrated me into the work of the HRC team. I also need to also call out my assigned battle buddy during the HOH program, Tyler V., who served as my sounding board and introduced me to the Military Veterans Network (MVN) Employee Resource Group within Schwab.
I've spent the last three years trying to answer that question, what do I want to do when I grow up? I did military HR for the last 11 years of my career as well as military recruiting, so I felt comfortable pursuing a career in HR. I pursued an MBA program at UT Dallas (2 weeks left) and one of the things that I took away from my coursework is that the best business strategies won’t succeed unless you have the right people and teams in place to execute them. As I planned my transition from the Marine Corps, I decided to pursue a career in a large organization that focused on intertwining their people strategy with their business strategy to win. I can say that I have found that at Charles Schwab.
I'm a member of the HR Consulting (HRC) team which falls under HR Advisory Services. Our team partners with leaders across the organization on a variety of HR topics, annual HR programs, and work through tough scenarios with multiple HR COE stakeholders to support our employees. It’s a lot of fun, it changes every single day, and you get to talk to leaders across Schwab to learn more about what they do to support our clients.
Schwab’s guiding principles and values align very closely with the Marine Corps core values. This similarity helped me immensely as I began acclimating to a corporate environment. In my first three months at Schwab, I began to see that integrity, trust, teamwork, and collaboration demonstrated by my fellow Schwabbies are really the same things that I've lived by during my career in the Marine Corps.
I think that there is a great opportunity for Schwab to become an employer of choice for veterans and military spouses. I encourage leaders across the organization to take a chance on a veteran or a military spouse that doesn’t necessarily have the typical resume or career path that you are used to seeing. Oftentimes, veterans and military spouses struggle at getting that first opportunity at a large organizations due to multiple job changes, moves across the country, and international deployments. If given the chance, we will not let you down!
My advice for individuals interested in the program is to contact previous HOH program participants or members of the Military Veterans Network. The correlation between the core values that service members and military spouses live by in the military directly aligns with the values and ethics ingrained into the culture at Schwab. Taking the long view, team collaboration, challenging the status quo, and doing the right thing when no one is watching makes Schwab a perfect match for veterans and military spouses looking to join a large organization.
By Andie T., Specialist, Talent Acquisition