Kimberly Stiener-Murphy (Courtesy photo)

Editor's Note: The following story was authored by Robert Half and highlights a veteran at Robert Half. Committed to including talented members of the military community in its workplace, Robert Half is a client of Hirepurpose, a Task & Purpose sister company. Learn more here.

Like many veterans transitioning from a military to a civilian career, Kimberly Stiener-Murphy was at a crossroads when she left the Air Force. She hadn't planned for what's next after her service to our country — something, in retrospect, she wishes she had done. She struggled for months to find a new career path. She considered applying for a job as a prison security guard. She also thought about going back to college using the GI Bill.

With an estimated 200,000 service members exiting the military in the United States annually, post-service career placement is a critical issue. One of the biggest obstacles veterans face is translating their military skills for a civilian job market.

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Courtesy Jason Russell

Like many transitioning service members, Jason Russell struggled with translating his valuable Army experience and knowledge as a helicopter mechanic for a special operations unit to the civilian workforce. Microsoft, with its commitment to veterans, provided him with the technical skills and direction he needed to pursue a successful career in the technology industry.

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U.S. Army photo

If you served in the military but are not quite sure how your skills will translate to the civilian world, focus on the discipline, problem-solving and leadership skills that you learned from the start of your time in service. Veterans with a background in combat arms, infantry, or security will find that their leadership skills, attention to detail, and discipline could land them a lucrative job in high-end security, crew leadership, landscaping, and other specialized fields.

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Transitioning from the military can be a wide open-opportunity to either return to your home of record or expand your horizons to relocate to a new area, full of possibility. Known for its changing seasons, lower cost of living, contrasting small-town charms, and urban centers of commerce, the Midwest is a great place to explore your next career adventure. Thousands of positions are currently available for veterans of varying levels of experience and expertise in the states of Illinois, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska, and Wisconsin. Here are six military-friendly Hirepurpose partner companies with positions open now in the Midwestern region.

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U.S. Army photo by Spc. True Thao

Technology is integrated into every part of our daily lives, from health care to business to entertainment. Advances in technology — like the rise of cloud computing, mobile applications, wearables and big data — have created a high demand for skilled technicians and leaders to fill a variety of IT positions across many sectors. High demand leads to great salaries and benefits. According to the National Bureau of Labor and Statistics, employment in computer and information technology occupations is projected to grow 12% from 2014 to 2024, faster than the average for all other occupations.

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Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Last week, we published part one of a career series designed to highlight positions with Hirepurpose partners that represent great opportunities in the top cities ranked as the best places for veterans to pursue new careers by USAA and the Hiring Our Heroes Program.

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