Salesforce launches VetForce program in Australia to provide veterans with training and employment opportunities in the technology sector

Salesforce to partner with not-for-profit Soldier On, committing to train 100 veterans over next 24 months

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA—September 27, 2016—Salesforce, the Customer Success Platform and world's #1 CRM company, today launched its VetForce program in Australia through a partnership with Soldier On. Soldier On is an Australian not-for-profit that supports the successful transition of veterans from the Defence Force back into civilian life. This is achieved through a range of services, support, resources and job placement opportunities. With the partnership, Salesforce and Soldier On will work together to provide training and employment opportunities to help veterans reintegrate into the workforce and find career opportunities in the technology sector.

VetForce, a global program launched in 2014 by Salesforce in the United States, is dedicated to making the transition from veteran to civilian smoother by delivering free, structured self-paced learning and training to people who have served in the Army, Navy and Airforce, as well as provide connections into the Salesforce ecosystem. The VetForce program in Australia is modeled after the program in the US and addresses a critical need with approximately 5,500 veterans leaving the military and transitioning back to civilian life in Australia in 2015.

The initiative will also benefit the wider Australian business community by helping to fill a gap in the market for skilled IT professionals. A recent Deloitte report projected a shortage of 100,000 IT workers in the next five years, while according to CSIRO, Australia will need to retrain six million people to become digitally literate by 2025 in order to transition to a knowledge economy. Further research by IDC predicts that Salesforce and its ecosystem will deliver over 25,000 jobs in Australia by 2020[1].

VetForce commits to certification for 100 Australian veterans
In Australia the VetForce program aims to provide 100 veterans with the opportunity to become Salesforce certified over the next 24 months in a scalable framework for structured self-paced learning. The training is offered across a number of role types, equipping veterans for careers as Salesforce system analysts, business analysts, technical analysts and various other roles. The program already has an ex-Defense personnel, Mick Gawalski, going through it as a pilot to provide feedback and further tailor the program to best meet the needs of veterans.

The training and certification programs will run for four weeks, after which VetForce will provide mentorship and support to help veterans gain employment within the cloud community.

Comments on the News
• Gareth Baker, Channels and Partnerships Director, Salesforce Marketing Cloud APAC and VetForce leader: “Veterans have a great foundation of skills including teamwork, communication, critical-thinking and problem solving. Currently we have a situation where on the one hand, thousands of skilled veterans are ready to transition into the workforce each year, and on the other there is a fast growing industry that is experiencing a skills shortage. The role of VetForce is to bridge that gap and connect veterans with career opportunities in the technology sector.
• John Bale, CEO and Co-Founder of Soldier On, said: “Finding employment is key for veterans’ successful reintegration from the Defence Force into the community. It’s a major element of our holistic approach to transition which aims to help veterans reintegrate into the community and avoid much bigger issues down the track, including homelessness, suicide and family breakdown.”
•  “The rehabilitation and recovery of those impacted by their service is not going to be achieved by one organisation working in isolation. Our partnership with Salesforce and other organisations that share our vision enhances the level of support we can provide and helps us reach more people in need.”
• Mick Gawalski, former Australian Defence Force member, said: “VetForce has the potential to make a real difference in the job prospects of returning veterans with its focus on practical skills and bridging the gap from service to employment.”

VetForce is actively seeking additional technology companies in Australia to support the program through employment pledges, veteran coaching and mentoring as well as business and soft-skills training. For more information on VetForce, please visit:

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About Soldier On
Soldier On’s mission is to achieve the best reintegrated generation of serving and ex-serving men and women in Australia’s history. To achieve this, Soldier On provides a range of services, including free counselling sessions, wellbeing activities and programs, career coaching, employment-ready resources and job placement opportunities, to our veterans and their families. Our veterans and their families face a range of issues when they leave the Defence Force, from re-shaping a new identity and finding a new career to dealing with the mental impacts from their service, and Soldier On’s services, support, resources and job placement opportunities have been designed to help veterans and their families work through these issues and build successful futures.

[1]The Salesforce Economy Report 2016