Military Transitions

Word cloud of most significant concerns when transitioning from the military into the civilian workforce. "Finances" is the largest word.Military Saves’ mission is to promote the importance of savings and to encourage servicemembers and their families to take financial action. Over the next six weeks, our campaign will be focused on the big transition: leaving the military.

This resource packet contains a message to our partners, sample article, social media posts, and resources designed to help you communicate with your audience about the importance of making saving for transition a top priority. We encourage you to use this material to position your organization “on the front lines” of the savings message, to encourage individuals to take the Military Saves pledge, and to help our servicemembers transition without debt and with a healthy savings safety net.

As educators, counselors, coaches, non-profits and practitioners we’ve all seen the devastating impact that failing to adequately plan for transition can have on an individual and family. The data show that approximately one out of two (53 percent) separating Post-9/11 Veterans will face a period of unemployment. Let’s continue to work together to get the need to “save for transition” message out to servicemembers before they get out. Thank you for all you do for our servicemembers!

Download the partner packet in Word.

In this Packet:

Sample Article

Social Media Content

Relevant Resources

Sample Article

For use in communications that directly reach your constituents. We encourage you to use its contents as a guest post for your blog, newsletter, e-mail communications or any other publication. Feel free to rewrite it as your own.



A Military Transition “SMEAC“ Approach (5 Paragraph Field Order)

By Letty Stevens, AFC®

S: Situation

M: Mission

E: Execution

A: Administration and Logistics

C: Command and Signal

Situation: Transitioning out of the military needs to be well planned and executed. No matter your rank, occupational specialty or training, the process is not an easy one and it is not intuitive. You must have goals. One key goal is for you to be both financially and mentally prepared for the transition into civilian culture.

One of the biggest obstacles to your peace of mind during transition is debt. If you transition out of the military with credit card debt and/or an outstanding car or personal loan, you may have a potentially detrimental situation on your hands. Being in the military guarantees a consistent paycheck. In the civilian world, however, you are likely to change jobs frequently, and may find yourself unemployed from time-to-time. The sooner you pay off your debt and start saving, the better off you and your family will be during your transition, and into your civilian life.

Mission: The Military Saves mission makes savings and savings strategies a priority for servicemembers and their families. For those who are transitioning, this is a call to action!

Execution: We encourage you to take the savers pledge, sign up for biweekly text messages and begin to discuss saving with your family as a transition strategy today.

Administration: You are the sole administrator of your finances, but we encourage you to reach out to your resources. For those of you who are married this is a team effort. Logistics: Your spouse is transitioning with you, and having his/her additional income to get you through your transition needs to be discussed in the months and years leading up to your transition.

Command and Signal: Take command of your financial transition by making a plan to pay off your debt and start saving today!

  1. Start the process with an honest discussion. Just sit down and talk with your spouse, significant other, financial counselors or whoever you trust.
  2. Document your SMART transition goals, immediate and long term.
  3. Keep communicating and saving, with verbal and visible reminders. Text messaging is now available when you take the savers pledge.

This is your new financial life taking shape, and it all starts with a plan. When you plan to save and stick with your plan, it will result in your financial peace of mind today, during your transition, and into your civilian life.

Military Saves, managed by the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America (CFA), seeks to motivate, encourage, and support servicemembers and military families to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth. Learn more at

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Social Media Content

Share the following messages with your Facebook & Twitter followers.






Save for transition, sock away windfalls #SavingsTipTuesday @militarydotcom @MilitarySaves
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TSP is effective way 2 save for #retirement automatically @Military Saves #SavingsTipTuesday
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6 transition tips no. 2 >> cut and save: #SavingsTipTuesday @MilitarySaves
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8 financial tips to ease the transition. No. 6: Build your emergency savings! #SavingsTipTuesday @marybstorj @MilitarySaves
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5 financial tips. No. 3: Have an emergency fund ready. #SavingsTipTuesday @usnews @MilitarySaves
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Save 3-4 months’ worth of living expenses 2 alleviate stress. #SavingsTipTuesday @NMSNetwork @MilitarySaves
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# 1 Transition tip: Set aside a transition fund.  #SavingsTipTuesday #BetterMoneyHabits @MilitarySaves
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Financial preparedness for transition is key concern @MilitarySaves @NMFA #SavingsFactFriday
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76% active duty servicemembers have retirement accounts #SavingsFactFriday @FINRAFoundation
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Paying off a mortgage early can result in serious savings during #retirement @MilitarySaves #SavingsFactFriday
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44% of workers indicate they don't have a problem with their level of debt. @MilitarySaves #SavingsFactFriday
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69% report that they or their spouse have saved money for retirement @MilitarySaves #SavingsFactFriday
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Additional Posts

Tools to help you successfully navigate your transition: @FINRAFoundation @MilitarySaves
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It’s a good idea to get your financial house in order before you separate. @MilitarySaves
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Creating a workable budget and sticking to that budget is a great start. #FinanciallyResponsible @MilitarySaves
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U need about 80% of your pre-retirement income 2 continue UR quality of life #Retirementtalk @USAgov @MilitarySaves
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The earlier you plan for transition, and the more you save toward it, the better your chances of having it work out as you planned. @MilitarySaves
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A trusted, well-informed financial coach can increase your odds of financial success @CFPBMilitary @MilitarySaves  
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Relevant Resources

Share the following tools and resources with your audience and with other organizations.

Military Saves Resources about Transition and Retirement





Additional Resources

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Partner Resource Packets

Want to share savings messages?

Our Partner Resources Packets include blog, social media, and other content.

View the latest

Tip of the Day

  • Written by Guest Blogger | March 14, 2014

    Shop around for auto and homeowners' insurance: Before renewing your existing policies, check out the rates of competing companies whose annual premiums could be several hundred dollars lower. 

Saver Stories View all »

Setting a Goal Leads to Success

Written by Super User | May 24, 2019

Growing up, Marisa’s dad had always talked about saving first, but she said she didn’t really internalize it until much later. “I was drifting along with no plan, carrying a little bit of revolving debt, saving some money here and there, but without a real plan for it.”


Living the Dream: This Military Couple Retired Early

Written by Jackie Toops | March 18, 2021

“Continuous dedication to financial peace pays off,” shares military couple, Denise and Jim. They would know, because at ages 52 and 53, they are already retired. The couple enjoyed life as an Army family for 32 and a half years and started planning for retirement decades ago. Denise shares, “We are not working a paid job, but are volunteering and meeting some personal fitness goals and enjoying some time together after many years spent geographically apart. It can be done!”


How Smart Financial Decisions Can Create Opportunities 

Written by Stephen Ross, America Saves Program Coordinator | November 22, 2019

Of the many stories Military Saves shares, most describe how someone was in dire straits financially and worked their way out of it with the help of Military Saves. This time we want to highlight a different kind of story. This is a story about how responsible financial decisions can build on one another to create opportunities you thought only the super-rich enjoy.