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Supporting Our Troops

Materiality Assessment Topics: Employee diversity; Employee engagement; Giving & Philanthropy; Supplier diversity; Volunteerism

Issue Summary

Members of the military and their families make great sacrifices for our country, and often confront unique challenges during periods of deployment and during their return to civilian life.

Our Position

For nearly 100 years, AT&T has remained dedicated to supporting military personnel, veterans and their families. Our nation’s service men and women make sacrifices to protect our country and our freedoms, and as a company, it as an honor to support them at home and abroad. Moreover, military veterans possess the skills we need to succeed as a company and are an invaluable part of our workforce.

Data Highlights

Our Action

Recruiting and Hiring Military Veterans

We’ve integrated veteran recruitment into our business practices for years. We focus on recruiting veterans not only because it’s the right thing to do, but also because it’s good for our business. In the past few years, we enhanced our military recruitment programs by increasing our promotion of AT&T as an employer of choice within the veteran community. That includes hiring a Military Talent Attraction Program Manager to inform the military about AT&T and educate AT&T managers about the military.

Online Tools and Resources

We understand that the job search and application process at large companies can be challenging for anyone — and even more so for transitioning veterans who are entering a new world with a new set of jargon. Therefore, we created online tools, resources and checkpoints to optimize success through our recruitment process, such as:

  • A military-focused career site:
  • A Military Skills Translator Tool that allows veterans to use their current Military Occupation Code or Military Occupation Specialty to identify civilian jobs at AT&T that may be a good fit for them:
  • The Careers for Veterans program that is designed to support veterans moving into civilian life to give them career advice and highlight AT&T jobs:
  • An AT&T Military Timeline to help guide veterans step by step through their transition.
  • A career page for military spouses highlighting work locations that provide portable, flexible jobs:

Stepping up our Hiring Commitment

In April 2013, we pledged to hire 5,000 veterans and their family members into career opportunities over the next five years, consistent with our commitment to equal employment opportunities. In November 2013, we doubled the five year commitment to 10,000.  At the end of 2015, we accomplished that mission by hiring 10,000 veterans in 3 years within our AT&T family. In May 2016, we partnered with The White House Joining Forces and pledged to hire an additional 10,000 veterans, bringing our total commitment to 20,000 veterans by 2020. 

Veteran Employee Resource Group

The AT&T Veterans Employee Resource Group (ERG) is more than 30 years old and serves more than 9,000 members. This group creates an instant community for veterans joining the company and involves them in outreach, philanthropy and volunteerism opportunities – including ways to refer fellow veterans for jobs at AT&T. Members of the AT&T Veterans ERG serve as Career Ambassadors and represent AT&T at veteran career events.

Veteran Jobs Mission

AT&T is a founding member of the Veteran Jobs Mission, launched in 2011 by JPMorgan Chase and 10 other companies to commit to hiring 100,000 veterans by 2020. Since then, the coalition has grown to more than 200 private-sector companies that represent almost every industry in the U.S. economy. The Veteran Jobs Mission companies have hired 292,645 veterans since 2011.

Awards and Recognitions

  • 2014 Secretary of Defense Employee Support Freedom Award, the Department of Defense’s highest recognition given to employers for exceptional support of Guard and Reserve employees.
  • G.I. Jobs Magazine recognized AT&T as one of the Top 50 Most Military Friendly Employers for the past ten years.
  • G.I. Jobs Magazine recognized AT&T as a Top 50 Military Spouse Friendly Employer for the past three years.
  • AT&T recognized as one of the 10 Best Corporations for Veteran-Owned Businesses by Vetrepreneur Magazine for the past 5 years.
  • Military Times, a Gannett publication, ranked AT&T #7 on its EDGE list of companies that are Best for Vets.
  • U.S. Veterans Magazine named AT&T as one of the nation’s Best of the Best Top Veteran-Friendly Companies and Top Supplier Diversity Programs in 2015.
  • AT&T awarded Employer of the Year 2015 – Texas Veterans Commission.
  • In 2016, DiversityInc named AT&T as Top 10 Companies for Veterans

AT&T supports veterans and military families through a variety of financial contributions, programs and collaborations with organizations dedicated to servicemen and women. We support Blue Star Families and their networking events for military spouses as well as in their mission to honor and empower military families through no cost programs available to members across the country.

Cell Phones for Soldiers

A long-standing mission of AT&T is to connect members of our nation's military with their loved ones back home. Initiated in 2004, and expanded through financial support from AT&T, Cell Phones for Soldiers is a nonprofit that uses funds from recycled cell phones to buy prepaid phone cards for our service men and women, helping them connect with their families. 

Supplier Diversity

AT&T is proud to announce the 2015 graduation of 12 service-disabled veteran-owned businesses from a mentorship program executed by the John F. Kennedy Institute of Entrepreneurial Leadership (JFK). The JFK mentorship program reflects AT&T’s commitment to increasing its vendor diversity by implementing a program that addresses the challenges that businesses face when competing for contracts in the global marketplace. The 2015 educational and mentorship program was designed to help service-disabled veteran-owned enterprises improve their business operations and their ability to win corporate contracts using three pillars for success - education, mentoring and presentations. Since 2011, 87 diverse business owners graduated from the JFK mentorship program. The course educated participants on fundamental business practices to transform their corporate model and build meaningful mentor relationships.  

 The 2015 JFK program included weekly webinars and AT&T Telepresence meetings that facilitated service-disabled veteran business owners to: 

  • Analyze corporate plans and financials
  • Create a business strategy
  • Refine a business plan and offering
  • Structure management styles and marketing strategies 

Toward the end of the seven-month course, the vets finalized their business plans and on graduation day presented their plans to AT&T, the program mentors and business owners at the JFK University campus in Concord, California. 

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Updated on: Jul 31, 2016