Two workforce initiatives aimed at filling the region’s talent gaps

The goal, Gilbert said, is to have a holistic and systematic approach to talent acquisition and retention that leverages visitors who have had a positive experience with Cleveland. Individual members of the group – in addition to Destination Cleveland, they are the Greater Cleveland Partnership, Team NEO, Cleveland Leadership Center, Cuyahoga County, Engage! Cleveland, JobsOhio, Global Cleveland, MAGNET, Fund for Our Economic Future, and Cleveland Neighborhood Progress — will aim to do what they do best without duplicating efforts or wasting resources.

One of the first programs is the Women in Cyber ​​Security Conference, a professional meeting and recruiting event taking place Wednesday and Thursday, March 16-17 at the Huntington Convention Center in Cleveland. Destination Cleveland, GCP and Team NEO are working to recruit some of the participants to relocate.

GCP helped compile a list of Cleveland companies looking for cybersecurity professionals for the event, and Gilbert’s organization is creating an immersive experience in Cleveland – including a large Cleveland-themed party and a streetscape at the convention center – to make the most of the time with an audience of nearly 900 attendees who came to the event to interview multinational companies such as Amazon and Google.

“These are women, some recent graduates, looking for jobs in cybersecurity,” Gilbert said. “They’re also people who will experience Cleveland, so we know they’re more open to the message of living in Cleveland.”

The talent alliance is also collaborating on ways to increase the postgraduate retention rate by 43% in the region.

Marianne Crosley, president and CEO of the Cleveland Leadership Center and a force behind Campus Cleveland, an organization that gives college-aged students a more comprehensive view of the area’s professional and civic amenities, wants to push that number much higher. .

Working from data Leadership Cleveland gathered from focus groups held in 2019 on local college campuses, Crosley said most students surveyed haven’t ventured into the city of Cleveland except to attend an event. sports or at a concert during their stay here, then they quickly left these events.

“They certainly had no connection to Cleveland neighborhoods, and they didn’t see any student-friendly places in Cleveland,” Crosley said.

Michael A. Bynum