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Transition Assistance Program

By: Department of Labor

The Transition Assistance Program (TAP) was established to meet the needs of separating service members during their period of transition into civilian life by offering job-search assistance and related services.

The law creating TAP established a partnership among the Departments of Defense, Veterans Affairs, Transportation and the Department of Labor’s Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS), to give employment and training information to armed forces members within 180 days of separation or retirement.

TAP helps service members and their spouses make the initial transition from military service to the civilian workplace with less difficulty and at less overall cost to the government. An independent national evaluation of the program estimated that service members who had participated in TAP, on average, found their first post-military job three weeks sooner than those who did not participate in TAP.

TAP consists of comprehensive three-day workshops at selected military installations nationwide. Professionally-trained workshop facilitators from the State Employment Services, military family support services, Department of Labor contractors, or VETS’ staff present the workshops.
Workshop attendees learn about job searches, career decision-making, current occupational and labor market conditions, and resume and cover letter preparation and interviewing techniques. Participants also are provided with an evaluation of their employability relative to the job market and receive information on the most current veterans’ benefits.

Service members leaving the military with a service-connected disability are offered the Disabled Transition Assistance Program (DTAP). DTAP includes the normal three-day TAP workshop plus additional hours of individual instruction to help determine job readiness and address the special needs of disabled veterans.

Although experience shows that veterans generally enjoy a favorable employment rate in the nation’s job market, many veterans initially find it difficult to compete successfully in the labor market. The TAP program addresses many barriers to success and alleviates many employment related difficulties.

For more information about U.S. Department of Labor employment and training programs for veterans, contact the Employment and Training Service office nearest you, listed in the phone book in the United States Government under the Labor Department or visit our site: