Chesapeake Energy has been making a name for itself as a recruiter of military veterans.
G.I. Jobs magazine named the company a 2011 Top 100 Military-Friendly Employer for its recruitment programs built in the last two years. Chesapeake hias hired 36 junior military officers, 25 through a program with Alliance International, a Raleigh, N.C., firm that provides transition services for veterans.
Chesapeake also hired more than 100 servicemen who came to the company through the Troops 2 Roughnecks program run by a company of the same name.
The roughnecks head to the fields. The officers join Chesapeake as field engineers, production foremen, and analysts.
Alliance helps place 250-300 candidates per year, out of the several thousand junior military officers who are coming back into the private sector upon leaving the military. The firm runs deep assessments of its recruits, transforming the military-ese of their experiences into potential private sector matches.
"We’re trying to get an appreciation for what kind of culture, what kind of function, industry, these candidates would flourish in," says John Todd, CEO of Alliance International.
Five times a year, Alliance, which gets paid by the employer when it places a candidate, flies job candidates into conferences, where it pairs the jobseekers with potential employers like Chesapeake. Job offers often quickly follow.
"There’s no lag time," Brian Murnahan, a Chesapeake spokesman, says. "They get into the business world and move on up."
And the pay is good, he said.
It’s not uncommon, for example, for a junior officer to come into Chesapeake as a field engineer making more than $80,000 per year, he said.
Brian McCoy, an Army captain and helicopter pilot, who hired by Chesapeake as a field engineer last year, was looking to start a family with his wife when he left the military after seven years.
Alliance flew McCoy, stationed in South Korea after a tour that took him from Alabama to Germany and Italy, into Chicago for a jobmatching conference in May 2009, where he holed up in a hotel room and interviewed with Chesapeake and several other employers over two days.
The open positiions included everyting from orthopedic sales, to plant managers, and repping sunglasses.
"Not all of them made sense, to tell you the truth," McCoy said. "But even the ones that didn’t, I really enjoyed reading about the companies. The idea of going to some of them, it was pretty emotional."
McCoy, originally from Spring near Houston and son of a father who worked in oil and gas, made sense of Chesapeake. "It made sense to me immediately," he says.
McCoy left Korea in mid-June 2009, was discharged from the military that July, and started at Chesapeake July 28, 2009.
- Scott Nishimura, jobs and workplace reporter, Star-Telegram
(Photo: Chesapeake's Brian McCoy)