AAFES goes where you go

Exchange also looking for employees

By J.M. Simpson on July 18, 2019

For over a century, the Army & Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) has played a vital role in maintaining the military's readiness, recruiting and retention.

"Our motto is ‘We Go Where You Go,' and one of the Exchange's core values is ‘family serving family,'" said Alexandra Pirkle, corporate communication writer and editor.

"AAFES' deep passion for serving sets the Exchange apart ... 85 percent of our associates have a military connection."

The Exchange is the 61st largest retailer in the United States, and it is a non-appropriated fund entity of the Department of Defense.

Over the last 10 years, its earnings have provided $2.3 billion in dividends to support military morale, welfare and recreation programs.

One hundred percent of the Exchange's earnings support the military community. Approximately 60 percent of this revenue supports quality-of-life programs vital to maintaining force readiness and resiliency, including Army Child Development Center and Fitness Centers, Air Force Outdoor Recreation activities, to name a few. All remaining monies are reinvested into new and renovated stores.

The Exchange runs more than 4,000 facilities in 49 states, 33 countries, four territories and the District of Columbia.

"When military members deploy to remote locations," continued Pirkle, "the Exchange is with them, bringing them products, services and a taste of home."

Throughout its history, Exchange employees have voluntarily deployed to serve during wartime and natural disasters; they have served in jungles, at sea and in the mountains.

"No other retailer has such a rich and storied history," the AAFES website states.

AAFES operates 41 stores on 32 installations in Middle Eastern countries, to include Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Qatar, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, as well as on installations in eastern Europe.

In providing services both here and downrange, the Exchange has made the hiring of veterans a priority.

"In 2018, the Exchange reaffirmed its commitment of hiring 50,000 veterans and military spouses by 2020," continued Pirkle. "Since 2013, the Exchange has hired 40,000 of these heroes."

AAFES is currently recruiting veterans to fill downrange positions.

"Veterans bring a wealth of experience to the Exchange, among them leadership, insight, and the ability to appreciate and identify with military shoppers across the globe, including contingency operations," Pirkle explained.

Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Luis Reyes, AAFES' senior enlisted advisor, amplified this point when he wrote in a press release, "these former servicemembers draw on the same work ethic, commitment and loyalty they used to serve our country."

Compensation is commensurate for all employees based on their position in the organization. 

"Whether management or non-management, the Exchange offers competitive wages along with benefits such as health insurance, 401K and pension, which sets our organization apart," concluded Pirkle.

"Positions in contingency locations also offer additional benefits, such as overtime and bonuses."

For those individuals in the Joint Base Lewis-McChord community interested in working for AAFES, contact the base's human resources office at 253.964.2522 or visit ApplyMyExchange.com to view a variety of job opportunities across the organization.