How One Chicago Nonprofit is Connecting Diverse Talent with Meaningful Work

A stable job can empower individuals in many ways. Full-time employment opportunities help close the economic inequality gap and enable individuals to remain financially independent.

The problem is that job opportunities can be exclusive – companies can ignore applicants simply because they lack a college education. But one Chicago-based job training program is working to change the hiring narrative and getting undiscovered talent in front of some big name companies.

re:work is a nonprofit sales training program teaching individuals without bachelor’s degrees how to sell software technology and placing program graduates in full-time sales jobs. Working specifically with Chicagoans from the South and West Side, re:work provides free sales training to help young professionals jump start their careers.

With more than 70 partners in the re:work network, candidates can explore entry-level sales positions that may lead to future roles in sales, business development, marketing, and software development. The Re:Work training program is just over two months long and candidates who complete the curriculum earn, on average, a starting salary of $50,000 plus benefits.

Harrison Horan is the founder of re:work and the go-to guy for everything. Horan’s day-to-day responsibilities include recruiting and staffing, business development, marketing and curriculum development. With re:work, Horan hopes to empower young professionals and to correct the injustices discriminating against equal work opportunities.

But re:work also has its fair share of challenges. A severe lack of exposure on the candidate side makes it difficult for potential applicants to identify what types of jobs are available to them; on the employer side, most technology companies continually draw their candidate pools from universities and don’t consider applicants from different educational backgrounds. And once candidates are placed, inclusion challenges make it difficult for new hires to feel like they belong in their workplace.

With Solve, Horan hopes to increase awareness around the free programs Re:Work offers individuals who are looking to fast track their career, boost their earnings potential, and increase their professional opportunities. To learn more about re:work’s training programs and who is eligible to apply, check out their website here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *