UPS Proudly Serves Those Who Serve

Two years ago, UPS committed to hiring 25,000 veterans and to contributing 25,000 volunteer hours to veterans causes by Dec. 31, 2018. UPS, a CSG Associate member, then upped the ante last year by declaring its intent to hire 50,000 veterans and to donating 50,000 volunteer hours to veterans’ causes within the same timeframe.

These commitments were made as part of UPS’ participation in the White House’s Joining Forces initiative, which was established in 2011 to give service members, veterans and their families the tools needed to be successful.  

“Hiring veterans is a good business decision and it is the right thing to do,” said Laura Lane, president of UPS Global Public Affairs. “Military experience translates well to UPS’ core business operations and aligns with our company values of teamwork, service and integrity.”

This excitement has driven UPS to make astounding progress toward achieving its hiring goal. 

At the end of April 2015, UPS already had hired 36,870 veterans for full-time, part-time or seasonal employment—completing more than 73 percent of its hiring goal before reaching the halfway point in the five-year timeline. 

Further, having recorded nearly 53,000 volunteer hours at military-focused charities between March 2013 and April 2015, UPS successfully fulfilled its commitment to donate 50,000 volunteer hours to veterans’ causes well in advance of the 2018 deadline the company established for itself.        

“When a company commits to 50,000 hires, it is a very external type of activity,” said Pat O’Leary, veterans affairs HR manager at UPS. “When we committed to 50,000 volunteer hours, it was a very internal strategy. It helped energize our employees.”

For O’Leary, UPS’ successes in meeting these hiring and volunteering goals demonstrate the company’s commitment to supporting America’s service men and women.   

“There are three things you need to do to set up a veteran’s strategy,” O’Leary said. “The first thing is that you have to value what veterans did while they were in the military—value the training and the experience and the skills they acquired while they were in the military. Second, you have to respect the fact that a person volunteered to subject themselves to the toughest physical, mental and emotional training on the planet for the privilege to defend and protect this country. That’s a special kind of person. That’s the kind of person you want working for you.

“And, the third thing is to honor veterans’ service. You know we never can fully repay veterans for what they have done for our country. But we should take every opportunity to show our appreciation.”

UPS’ hiring and volunteering goals, coupled with the growth in veteran hires, are only the latest achievements for a company that has long been recognized as a military-friendly employer. 

UPS has been given The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award twice, including in 1996 when the award was instituted. Given by Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, The Freedom Award remains the highest recognition given by the U.S. Government to employers for their outstanding support of employees serving in the Guard and Reserve.  

“Veterans have always been part of the success at UPS. One of our founders, George Casey, served in the Navy during World War I. Of our 11 CEOs, three were prior military. We value the integrity and commitment military personnel embody, along with their skills and experience,” O’Leary said.

Learn more about the veterans initiatives of CSG’s Associate members, including UPS, in the upcoming July/August issue of Capitol Ideas magazine.