Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce launches new talent platform with $1.3 million from JPMorgan Chase

New platform to facilitate efficient, bias-free recruiting to connect Chicago’s diverse talent with in-demand jobs

Published on Wednesday, May 1, 2019

CHICAGO - JPMorgan Chase and the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce announced their collaboration today in creating the Chicago Opportunity Exchange (COE), an innovative system that overhauls the recruiting process by moving beyond resume-based searches. The new platform connects qualified job seekers from diverse backgrounds, including those in communities that suffer from chronic disinvestment, with in-demand jobs that align with their interest through collaborations with nonprofits like Cara Chicago and Year Up.

 

The COE platform, made possible in part by a $1.3 million philanthropic investment from JPMorgan Chase, helps employers by screening and scoring candidates based on questions developed by occupational psychologists to help match a candidate to a job. Each candidate is ranked on how well they match the key needs and skill sets the employer has identified for the specific job. When candidates upload their resume to apply for a specific job, they also are evaluated and scored for other jobs that rank high in a match for needs and skills required, opening them to new opportunities they may not have been previous aware of.

 

In addition, the platform helps to eliminate unconscious bias. Recruiters can choose to mask names and colleges from their views when screening applicants, which studies show often result in unconscious bias in hiring. For candidates, this increases the probability they will be interviewed for positions they qualify for. 


“In order to help grow the region into a global hub for talent, we need to rethink our current hiring practices. The Chicago Opportunity Exchange is one way we are doing that. The platform simplifies the hiring process and helps companies find the talent they need now. We are delighted to collaborate with JPMorgan Chase to help create a more diverse, inclusive and efficient labor market throughout Chicagoland,” said Jack Lavin, President & CEO of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce.

This work between Chicago’s largest bank, which employs 14,000 people locally, the city’s premier business group, and Chicago’s higher education and workforce systems represents a unique workforce exchange to reach a diverse population of job seekers. Current partners include City Colleges of Chicago, America’s Urban Campus, Cara Chicago, and Year Up Chicago. Together, they are transforming the workforce ecosystem to help employers of all sizes compete for talent and candidates of all backgrounds compete for job opportunities. With COE, Chicago is serving as a national model for optimizing a regional labor market.

 

City Colleges of Chicago has begun to see students make employer connections through the COE. As the program continues to grow, it will further match talent at all Chicago’s colleges, universities and workforce agencies.

“This tool can ensure that people from every community are able to contribute their talents to the city's growth, and help us create a more inclusive Chicago economy,” said Juan Salgado, Chancellor of City Colleges of Chicago.

Small and large companies across Chicagoland have already been finding success on the platform, including JPMorgan Chase, Allstate Insurance, Fairmont Chicago Hotel, C.H. Robinson, Lincoln Park Zoo, and Steppenwolf Theatre Company.

 

“We are excited to be working with COE because it provides us with an effective way to connect to a diverse and well-qualified talent pool while meeting our mission of improving diversity and inclusion at Steppenwolf,” said LaDonna Lane, Human Resources Director, Steppenwolf Theatre Company. The organization posted an IT Coordinator position to the COE which drew a rich candidate pool that includes applicants from Harold Washington, DePaul University, Illinois Institute of Technology and Year Up, among others. 


In addition to providing critical financing for this initiative as part of its $40 million, three-year commitment to creating economic opportunity on the South and West sides, JPMorgan Chase is also using the platform to fill banking jobs throughout Chicagoland.

 

“Technology can play a critical role in making the recruitment process more efficient,” said Michelle Kuranty, Executive Director of Talent Acquisition, JPMorgan Chase. “We are pleased to be doing our part in the creation of solutions that connect more Chicagoans with in-demand, well-paying opportunities.”

 

Those interested in learning more about how to partner with the Chicago Opportunity Exchange can visit the COE’s website (https://chicagooppex.com) or contact Joey Mak, Vice President of Programs, Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce at jmak@chicagolandchamber.org or 312-494-6723.

 

About the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce

The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce represents over 1,000-member companies, their 400,000 employees, and over $24 billion in revenue. The Organization combines the power of its membership with its legacy of leadership and business advocacy to drive a dynamic economy. The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce focuses on delivering value for its members, making Chicagoland a world-class place to live and work. Visit ChicagolandChamber.org.

 

About JPMorgan Chase

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.7 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of customers in the United States and many of the world's most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com.

 

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Categories: Chamber News, Press Releases

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