by Joshua Hudson
United Rentals is the largest equipment rental company in the world – with nearly 700 rental locations in 48 states, 10 Canadian provinces, and Mexico. United Rentals’ 10,000 employees serve construction and industrial customers, utilities, municipalities, homeowners, and others. And the company rents over 2,900 classes of rental equipment with an annual revenue of $3.9 billion.
The company is looking for veterans to help the company continue to grow. G.I. Jobs asked Shawn Mullane, manager of recruitment & diversity, what he looks for when hiring for military-experience.
GIJ: What do prior military hires bring to your company that you like?
UR: Veterans are driven, reliable, technically proficient individuals with stellar leadership skills. Those attributes are strong indicators of success in our working environment.
GIJ: What issues do you find military transitioners should be aware of when entering the civilian workforce?
UR: The private sector requires veterans to be self-confident and able to equate their military knowledge, skills and abilities outside the military. That will help
increase the career opportunities available to them.
GIJ: What advantages do military personnel have over their peers of the same age and education level?
UR: Military personnel are impressive in their maturity and self-discipline. They are trained from the moment they enter the service as to how to perform well under pressure, and how their actions can enable or disable the team to succeed.
GIJ: What are the most common mistakes you see on military résumés?
UR: Often, the alignment of job duties between the military and civilian sector is off. Your TAP office may be able to provide guidance with that. Don’t be afraid to ask questions when you interview to inquire about a position. You may discover you have more experience for a position than you previously thought.
GIJ: What are the most common mistakes military make in interviews?
UR: Veterans make the same mistakes civilians do. They should be sure to research the company, know what they do and how their skills match up to those needed to be successful in the job for which they’ve applied. Ask questions when appropriate. The interview is an opportunity not only for the company to determine if you are a fit, but also to determine if the company is a fit for you.
GIJ: Is relocating essential to promote within your company?
UR: Relocating is not essential for promotional opportunities. But, employees may have the chance to do so. We think that’s a great benefit.
GIJ: What types of positions does your company recruit military for?
UR: Military veterans are recruited for a broad range of positions; Inside and Outside Sales Representatives, Equipment Service Technicians, CDL Drivers, and Branch Management make up the majority of our roles.
GIJ: Describe the responsibilities of one of these positions.
UR: We have the greatest need for skilled Service Technicians to service our construction equipment fleet. As a Service Technician, you’re part of an amazing team that keeps up on the latest technical innovations, schematics, and diagnostic tools for maintaining mechanical, electrical, hydraulic, gas, and diesel systems. From entry level to Shop Foreman, our Service Technicians are the “Protectors of our Fleet.” Most of our service technicians work first shift during normal business hours.
GIJ: Can a new hire stay in this position for an entire career or do you require new hires to “move up or move out” like the military does?
UR: We have employees who are good at what they do and who are happy staying in their specific role for their entire career. While we encourage our employees to grow and develop, we also support our employees who do the same great job day after day.
GIJ: What is the average starting pay for this position?
UR: With 680 locations across all geographies in the United States, Canada and Mexico, we are able to offer competitive rates across all disciplines.
GIJ: Are there any other special incentive benefits that might interest military new hires?
UR: Additional education assistance is available to our employees. Outside sales representatives or management roles may get use of a company vehicle.
GIJ: Describe the typical career progression for someone in this position?
UR: Many of our managers have started in a sales or service capacity. They spend a solid amount of time successfully performing in various roles and as a company we do invest in the education and development of our employees.
GIJ: Do you look for any specific educational requirements for this position?
UR: Our sales and management positions require a college degree, and our service technician positions require a high school diploma or the equivalent.
GIJ: What type of educational experience do you look for in military candidates?
UR: For service technician positions we look for specific technical training and familiarity with engine repair and diagnosis. Sales and management positions require excellent customer service, skills, some exposure to business process and procedure along with a service orientation and leadership skills.
GIJ: How many military veterans work in your company and what percentage of the total workforce does this comprise?
UR: We have nearly 400 military veterans working for us now and we hope to see that number increase in the next year.
GIJ: Did any of the senior executives in your company serve in the military?
UR: Two of our Senior Executives have sons currently serving in Iraq.