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Cultivating Talent from Untapped Communities

By hiring from diverse and underserved communities, a company can boost innovation along with its bottom line.

Workforce Q4 2019
The current U.S. labor market bodes well for workers: unemployment has been consistently low and demand for talent remains high. But this wreaks havoc for companies who face a talent shortage to fill vacant IT roles. In IT alone, the U.S. has an astounding 918,000 open roles. Much of this job growth stems from digital transformation. As companies digitally transform and tech roles infiltrate all industries, corporations and hiring managers need help to fill vacant positions. It’s time to seek alternative pipelines and cultivate talent from untapped communities.

Underserved communities, like people of color and veterans, traditionally face large obstacles to merely have access to the same opportunities and socioeconomic status as more privileged groups. This, however, does not mean that these underserved groups are incapable of doing fantastic work or learning the skills needed to thrive in the tech industry. This unfortunate misconception stalls companies when it comes to hiring from these untapped talent pools. At the nonprofit Workforce Opportunity Services (WOS), we work with people of color and veterans in underserved communities to train and place them into tech jobs at companies across the nation. With training and support, these workers can become part of the permanent structure of any company.

At WOS, we are at the forefront of producing a supply of well-trained workers to keep up with the demand. We identify strong candidates from underserved communities, train them to master applicable skills — in areas like data analysis, software development, IT support, and more — and place them at top-tier companies like Prudential, United Rentals, and PSEG.

When it comes to hiring diverse populations, diversity has been shown, time and time again, to boost innovation. Diverse teams bring a stronger variety of voices to the table, and a variety of viewpoints are crucial in America’s booming tech landscape. Additionally, a culturally inclusive work environment makes your business more attractive — not just to a large population of Gen-Z job-seekers, the most diverse generation yet, but also to stakeholders. The future of work is going to look radically different in the next five to 10 years, and businesses will be best prepared if they follow these trends towards inclusivity and belonging.

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