Private Sector Special Employer Incentive Program For Hiring Veterans

Attention Veteran Business Owners:

Here is another post regarding our new series aimed at  helping educate both employers and job seekers about the various programs that specifically help and benefit unemployed veterans!  Today’s Veteran Employment topic outlines the Private Sector SEI Program.  For more information, be sure to join us our Veteran Hire Veterans Initiative Facebook Page.

Private Sector Special Employer Incentive Program

Veterans Hire Veterans Badge

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) program provides eligible Veterans an opportunity to obtain training and practical hands-on experience concurrently through the Special Employer Incentive (SEI) program. The SEI program is for eligible Veterans that face extraordinary obstacles to obtaining employment.  Veterans who have completed training under the VA VR&E program are eligible for participation in an SEI program when determined appropriate by a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor (VRC) and/or Employment Coordinator (EC). Veterans are hired by participating employers at the on-set of the SEI program, employment is expected to continue following successful completion of the SEI program. The VRC and/or EC facilitate the process by identifying suitable placements and coordinating efforts between all parties.
Steps to Setting up an SEI

  • The employer, with assistance from the VRC or EC identifies specific job objectives to be accomplished by the Veteran
  • The employer will need to indicate the length of time it should take the Veteran to accomplish each objective
  • The employer specifies the wage schedule paid to the Veteran during the SEI
  • The employer signs VA Form 22-8794 , Designation of Certifying Officials. The employer lists staff who he/she authorizes to sign any documents relating to the SEI program
  • The employer signs a Veterans Administration Statement of Assurance of Compliance with Equal Opportunity Laws VA Form 20-8206
  • With the assistance from the VRC or EC the employer will complete the following forms:
  • – VA Form 28-1904 , Agreement to Train On The Job Veteran
  • – VA Form 28-1905c , Monthly Record of Training and Wages
  • – VA Form 28-1905m , Request for Supplies

Benefits to the Employer   


  • Reimbursement of up to 50% of Veteran’s salary during the SEI program to cover:

– Additional expenses incurred for cost of instruction
– Loss of production
– Additional supplies and equipment costs

  • Hire qualified Veterans trained to the agency’s specifications
  • Hire a trainee at an apprenticeship wage
  • VA provides the necessary tool, equipment, uniforms and other supplies
  • Appropriate accommodations are made based on individual needs
  • Minimal paperwork is required of the employer
  • The employer has the VA support during training and placement follow-up phase to assist with work or training related needs

 Benefits for Veterans

  • Immediate income and benefits as an employee
  • Incentive helps Veterans overcome barriers to employment
  • Valuable skills are learned in a practical setting that meet the employers specifications
  • Permanent employment following successful completion of the SEI program
  • One-on-one support from a VRC or EC to assist with training or work related needs

In summary, the SEI program is beneficial to both Veterans and employers.  This program enhances employment opportunities for Veterans as well as employers gaining a qualified skilled employee.


A Veteran must qualify for entitlement in the VA VR&E program in order to participate in the SEI program.  To learn more about the eligibility and enrollment requirements for the VA VR&E program, please call 1-800-827-1000.

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