The Best Jobs in America for Former Service Members

Indiana Guardsmen intelligence analysts train at Hulman Field Indiana National Guard Base.
Indiana Guardsmen intelligence analysts train at Hulman Field Indiana National Guard Base, Oct. 22, 2019. (Tech. Sgt. Luke R. Sturm/U.S. Air National Guard photo)

Your new job should allow you to put your military skills to good use, as well as fulfill your professional passion. But where can you find this dream job?

A new report, by Money magazine and, takes the guesswork out of finding the right job for retiring service members. Money magazine compiled a list of the best jobs for retirees who are ready to enter the "second act" of their careers in the civilian workforce.

Here is Money's list of the top five jobs for former service members:

1. Operations or Intelligence Analyst

Median pay -- $68,900. Collects and analyzes data to evaluate operational difficulties and makes recommendations to solve problems. Develops and follows modeling and evaluation processes to determine the effectiveness of current operational activities to determine problem areas and develop solutions.

2. Network Systems Manager

Median pay -- $73,600. Manages network systems for LAN (local area network), WAN (wide area networks, telecommunications and/or voice systems. May lead network security administration staff. May oversee a staff responsible for the development, installation and modification of computer operating systems.

3. Field Service Engineer

Median pay -- $74,900. Requires a bachelor's degree in an area of specialty and 6-8 years of experience in the field or in a related area.

4. Logistics/OPS Manager

Median pay -- $82,500. Manages and directs an organization's operational policies, objectives and initiatives. Familiar with a variety of the field's concepts, practices and procedures.

5. Senior Trainer/Training Manager

Median pay -- $83,500. Performs a variety of complicated tasks. May lead and direct the work of others. May report directly to an executive or head of a unit/department.

These jobs pay well and give service members a chance to show their skills, but many retirees look for jobs that offer other perks in addition to a healthy income.

"Today, workers look at a broader financial picture -- placing greater emphasis on health benefits and vacation time than ever before ...," Bill Coleman, senior vice president of compensation at, said in a press release.

"... [Job seekers] often prioritiz[e] non-financial goals reflecting a true 'total rewards' perspective."

The most sought-after workplace rewards for former service members are:

  1. Passion for work
  2. Promotion and advancement opportunities
  3. Skill enhancement (on-the-job experience)
  4. Flexible schedule
  5. Mental stimulation and challenge

"Passion is the new king," Meredith Hanrahan, chief marketing officer of, said in a press release.

"The majority of 'second-acters' aren't willing to make the critical tradeoffs for just any job. People want their contribution to matter; they want a passion payoff. It's not optional; it's the new requirement."

The new world of work is ready to accept the knowledge, skills and passion former service members have to offer. If you're retiring from the service and ready to find your dream job, search's Job board for career opportunities or visit the Veteran Jobs page for more career advice.

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