NAAEI recently offered the Certificate for Apartment Maintenance Technicians (CAMT) course at Fort Hood, Texas, in association with the Texas Apartment Association Education Foundation
and the Apartment Association of Central Texas
. We provided CAMT training to veterans who are transitioning back to civilian life but are struggling to find work. During this CAMT training program,we learned about the unique skills and training required by people who work in military housing and why veterans are an ideal fit for these jobs.
As many of you know, the apartment industry is a broad one that includes companies and properties that cater to specific types of residents, such as retirees, college students and military families – just to name a few. Each of these groups has their own needs and challenges that must be met by property managers and their staffs.
In the case of military housing properties, their residents are often under tremendous pressures brought on by having at least one family member on active duty. This is especially true if that person has been deployed overseas, leaving only one parent behind to take care of the children and run the household. These families have enough on their minds without having to worry about a leaky faucet or what to do about an air conditioning unit that continues to go out.
Multifamily housing companies that cater to military families train their maintenance staffs to “fix it right the first time” because even a minor inconvenience, such as a leaky faucet,is one stress these families don’t need. What they do need is a sense of community and realization they are not alone. As a result, employees at military housing properties must know how to provide that sense of belonging through communitywide activities and their daily interactions with residents. Staff members also need to be aware of the resources available to military families and be alert for residents struggling to cope with having a loved one away at war.
Veterans have already lived through what military housing residents face every day. They know the struggles, they know the emotions and they also know how to help. That’s why many privatized military housing companies like hiring veterans. With training and education, veterans can be taught how to fix a faucet, manage a property or provide superb customer service. The ability to recognize and provide that extra level of service needed by military families is a skill that is not easily taught yet is key to the military housing industry.
To learn more about what veterans bring to the industry, take a look at this video
in which military veteran and Gene B. Glick Company director Jason Whittington discusses the transferrable job skills veterans bring to our industry.