Sharp Veterans

Bo Sharp, left, receives a certificate from Army Lt. Col. Matthew Harmon denoting the participation of Sharp Transportation Inc. in the Army’s Partnership for Youth Success Program.

If a company is looking for employees who embody loyalty, duty and respect, two local businesses believe they can find exactly that and more by working in partnership with the United States Army.

One of those companies is Sharp Transportation Inc. in Wellsville, which recently signed a contract with the Army’s Partnership for Youth Success Program, guaranteeing a job interview and the possibility of employment for individuals who sign up for the Army.

Lt. Col. Matthew Harmon from the from the U.S. Army Recruiting Battalion in Salt Lake City explained how the program works, saying it’s a win-win.

“(Businesses) tell us specific jobs they are looking for, whether that is truck drivers with CDLs or human resources specialists or welders, whatever specific skill they are looking for. We have every one of those jobs in the Army as well, and we are looking for those people here,” he said.

Harmon said the program is a win-win for the Army and for local employers.

“It made sense to us to partner together with local businesses to help them not only with their employment problems but also with our own because what we found is if we have a guy who has a well-rounded job Monday through Friday, he is more likely to stay in the area, stay in the reserve unit and be a better soldier,” Harmon said.

Soldiers go through Army training and develop the skills and traits valued in the Army, and then they go back to the community, taking those things back into the workforce.

Their names are placed in a searchable database, giving potential employers a pool of candidates who already made it through the screening process for the Army — and only three out of 10 recruits are selected these days, Harmon said.

Businesses in the program are not required to hire from that pool, but they do guarantee an interview.

Chief of Public Affairs Jeff Ross said the program helps Army signees get their foot in the door.

“You can have all the skills in the world and the best resume,” Ross said. “But if you don’t get the interview you can’t get from point A to point C.”

Sharp Transportation, Inc. is a company that was started in 1990 by Zan Sharp, with his wife, Vivian, working at his side. They started with a small fleet of trucks that has since grown to nearly 100 trucks and 160 employees. The Sharp family operation now includes the couple’s son, Bo Sharp, who works to recruit drivers for the company.

Over the years, Bo watched his parents work hard to grow their business from simply hauling freight to one that now includes warehousing, logistics and more.

“Progress doesn’t come without dedication,” he said.

Finding similar dedication in their employees can be a challenge, and the Sharps believe they can find that through the Army’s PAYS program while also giving back to the men and women who service the country.

“Sharp Transportation can’t thank all veterans enough — not just those who work for Sharp’s, but all veterans,” Bo said.

Ross said Sharp Transportation is the second Cache Valley Company to partner with the U.S. Army in this program, after Ophir-Spirion LLC.

Twitter: amacavinta

Amy Macavinta is the crime reporter for The Herald Journal. She can be reached at amacavinta@hjnews.com.