A Veteran's Journey Into The Tech World: Navigating Transition, Opportunities, and Statistics

Adam P. Nowak, Vital Tech Solutions
November 10, 2023
Download PDF
Photo by Spc. Mariah Aguilar, 28th Public Affairs Detachment, U.S. Army

Photo by Spc. Mariah Aguilar, 28th Public Affairs Detachment, U.S. Army


Adam P. Nowak served in the U.S. Army before transitioning into a career in tech as a Senior Technical Recruiter for Vital Tech Solutions. Learn about his journey in translating his military skills into the corporate world.

As a Senior Technical Recruiter at Vital Tech Solutions, I embarked on a remarkable journey from serving in the U.S. Army to finding success in the tech recruitment industry. My story is a testament to the resilience and adaptability of veterans transitioning into civilian life, especially in the ever-evolving technology sector. Veterans' experiences are valuable, and their transition should be discussed more often.

My journey into the U.S. Army began in 2009, right in the midst of a challenging economic downturn. Armed with a double major in economics and general business, I was eager to embark on my career. However, the economic turmoil made it nearly impossible to find suitable employment in my field. I worked in the family business for a while after graduating, but knew it wasn’t what I wanted to do with my life. That's when I decided to explore my options in the Army.

I saw an opportunity not only to serve my country but also to tackle my student loans. Initially classified as a mechanic on paper, veterans like me know that the military often means wearing many hats. My trajectory shifted significantly when my college degrees were discovered, leading me to a role as an HR specialist. This role ignited my interest in talent acquisition and set the stage for my career transition.

Fast forward a few years, my wife and I started our family, and with a baby on the way, I began contemplating my transition out of the military. My initial plan wasn't recruitment; I envisioned myself in an HR specialist role. To help me in this transition, I leveraged the resources available to veterans. However, it wasn't until a fortuitous encounter at a local job fair that I stumbled upon the world of recruitment. This moment changed the course of my career, and I haven't looked back since.

One of the biggest challenges I faced during my transition was translating my military skills into the corporate world. The military mentality and jargon I had acquired needed to be restructured to align with corporate expectations. Veterans know that the one-week transition course offered can only scratch the surface of what it takes to adapt to civilian life and employment. To bridge this gap, I relied on resources like Hire Heroes and the VA's training programs.

It's vital to recognize the unique strengths veterans bring to the tech industry. We excel under pressure, can complete tasks independently, and adapt easily to diverse learning environments. But beyond the skills, it's the soft skills that truly set us apart. Our discipline, work ethic, and ability to work effectively within a team make us highly desirable candidates.

To my fellow veterans, I offer some advice: Use the resources available to you. There are countless resources designed to support veterans in their transition. Take the time to research what interests you in the tech field. I've seen many veterans successfully transition into tech careers by finding roles that not only align with job descriptions but also personally resonate with their military mindset.  In today's job market, veterans often face challenges, with many feeling that HR and recruiters don't fully understand their experiences. However, it's crucial to remember that the discipline, organizational skills, and work ethic instilled in us during our service make us highly desirable candidates.

As Veterans Day approaches, it's essential to highlight some statistics that shed light on the experiences of veterans in the job market:

● A high number of veterans in the US (55%) felt HR and recruiters failed to understand their experience.

● Landing a job is one of the most challenging aspects of transitioning for any veteran.

● Around 63% of veterans were disappointed with the lack of support they received during their job search.

In my current role as a Senior Technical Recruiter, I'm committed to helping veterans transition into technology careers successfully. I understand the challenges they face and can leverage my experience to connect them with opportunities that align with their skills and aspirations. My goal is to bridge the gap between veterans and tech companies seeking their unique talents.

My journey from the military to the tech recruitment industry is a testament to the potential and resilience of veterans. Our experiences are valuable, and our transition into civilian life, especially in the tech sector, should be a topic of regular discussion. With the right resources and mindset, veterans can thrive in the civilian workforce, making a significant impact on the tech industry's growth and development. If you're a veteran looking to transition into the tech field, know that there are individuals like me who are here to support and guide you on this journey.


Adam P. Nowak, Vital Tech Solutions
Adam P. Nowak, Vital Tech Solutions

Adam joined Vital Tech Solutions in September 2022 as a Senior Technical Recruiter. After leaving active- duty service in the U.S. Army, he began a career in the Talent Acquisition industry in 2017. Adam possesses a strong background in full life-cycle Engineering, IT and Professional recruiting coupled with strong client/account management experience with several Fortune 100 companies. Outside of work, he enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.

Become a Member