In 2023, military spouse unemployment was at nearly 21%, according to the DOD.
But an Army-developed app may soon connect military spouses with on-base and nearby employment opportunities, along with childcare resources – two major challenges that military families say are major issues for married service members.
Army Chief of Staff General Randy A. George announced the “My Army Post” app in October and a more detailed sources sought notice posted Monday says the app will include USA Jobs listings, on-base employment postings for gigs like retail, hospitality, and administrative roles, and available jobs around military installations.
Army members with families have long cited the transient lifestyle, lack of childcare options and degree and certification transfers as major issues that spouses face. And according to a 2021 survey, 20% of active-duty spouses identified childcare access as another significant barrier that they face in pursuing jobs or careers.
“What we’re trying to do is, is do things that will help improve the lives of our soldiers and families. And a big part of that is also making sure that people are welcomed to a new installation,” George said in October. “I remember going to a new installation many years ago and it’s daunting to show up there and so we just want to make sure that they have the access to the resources so they can thrive.”
The app was initially developed by the Army Software Factory. With the new posting, the service is now seeking input from the private sector on how to develop the current prototype app or start fresh with a contractor, according to the notice.
The notice says the Army hopes to include live traffic reports at installation gates and real-time map navigation in the app along with alerts for troops from senior commanders and community-specific messaging.
The app intends to use crowd-sourced information and provide installation resources for troops who are new to a military base. A similar vision by an Army veteran led to the recent creation of a Yelp-like review app for military dining and housing facilities.