Link To Guest Website:

Title: “Helping Women Grow, Thrive, & Re-Enter The Workforce”
Guest: Addie Swartz – ReacHire
Interviewers: Nathan Gobes – Radio Entrepreneurs & John Dustin – JED Insurance

Click here to read the transcript

Nathan (1s):
Welcome back Radio Entrepreneurs, listeners and fans. I’m producer Nathan Gobes, filling in for Jeffrey Davis this morning. I want to thank you all for listening. I I’ve joined by my cohost, John Dustin of JED Insurance. Welcome back, John.

John (15s):
It’s been great to be here today and I see you’ve got a great list of guests coming on the show today. Excited to be here.

Nathan (22s):
Thank you, John. Always good to have you at my side. You’re right. We do have a great guest. She’s actually a returning guest, Addie Swartz, CEO of ReacHire welcome Addie.

Addie (32s):
Thanks so much for having me excited to be here today.

Nathan (35s):
Yeah, thank you. You last joined us in 2019, so there may be some listeners that aren’t familiar with your organization. Why don’t you fill us in on what ReacHire does and then maybe we’ll get into what you’ve been up to since you last joined a few years ago.

Addie (51s):
So ReacHire is all about helping companies focus on their gender talent pipelines. So we help women get back to the workforce and companies create more diverse and diverse talent pools. And we also help women grow and thrive through our new digital platform, Aurora, which I’m very excited to say it wasn’t something we offered when I was interviewed by you guys in January of 2019. So the entrepreneur continues.

John (1m 24s):
Wow. Addie, you must be very, very busy with the lack of labor crisis going on currently.

Addie (1m 32s):
Yeah, well we know that the, the pandemic really kind of created this, what everyone is calling that she session, which is all about, you know, women being either forced out or needing to take time off from their careers to manage childcare, schooling, et cetera. And here we are with, you know, this new variant and more questions about, about what’s happening and uncertainty. So, you know, there’s millions of women that have been sidelined for one reason or another. And the growth in organizations right now is significant and diversity is a key metric for companies.

Addie (2m 15s):
And so if you kind of add that all up, you have a situation where there’s not enough talent, there’s not enough diverse talent, the talent that’s, there is being pressured in all kinds of ways, both with personal obligations and professional obligations to keep it all together, especially if you’re a woman and you have more responsibility. So it really adds up to a difficult and challenging time.

John (2m 42s):
Are you matching the candidates? So you’re bringing them to, to a specific, how does ReacHire work?

Addie (2m 50s):
Yeah, so we work in two ways. So our original focus was to really zero in on women that had taken time off. And now we’re looking to go back in the workforce. And in fact, a recent study that just came out a few weeks ago was showing that all the applicant tracking systems, all the technology tools that people companies use now really push out alternate candidates that have breaks on the resume. So ReacHire was really designed to help those people, both men, both women and men, because we actually support everyone in getting back with sort of a concrete on-ramps.

Addie (3m 30s):
So we bring women and men back in cohorts. So anywhere from six to 50 people at a time into one company where they get onboarded retrained, they’re in the quasi apprenticeship in a way for six months while they, you know, get back in the game with new skills, upgrade their skills and get paid for doing it all. And so we’ve been doing that for almost a decade and we’ve placed hundreds and hundreds of people back in the workforce. And while they’re on their concrete, on-ramp, they’re actually our employees. So we co-create the jobs with the corporations and take all the risks, responsibility, and coaching and support through that six month assignment while those individuals get back into the workforce.

John (4m 21s):
So almost I want to debit a temporary health solution with the hope that they get permanently high in a position.

Addie (4m 32s):
Yeah, we, we think of it more. It’s definitely sort of a, a test drive for the person and it’s a test drive for the company, but we’re all about getting that person hired at the end. You know, somebody’s taken a break for two years, five years, 18 years, their skills are not up to date exactly with where the technology is and, you know, jobs are different roles are different and environments are different. And so it gives the individual this opportunity to test drive. And it also helps the companies to sort of calibrate the kinds that the type of person and the skill set that they need.

Addie (5m 16s):
We have a huge success rate over 90% of the, of the people placed end up in those roles three years later in those companies. And they’re big large companies like, you know, Wayfair T mobile fidelity, you know, cybersecurity companies, we’re, we’re launching pro programs all over the country. As I said, we’re almost into this for a decade, but really what’s really exciting about that because we really walk alongside that the individual and we are cheering them on all along the way, but what’s really exciting.

Addie (5m 57s):
I think especially maybe important for the listeners that you have in this audience is that you always have to continue to evolve and move to the needs of the market. And so, you know, I recognize that it’s one thing to replenish the talent pool with diverse talent, but it’s another thing to think about all the talent you have, that’s diverse and making sure that they thrive and, and, and are happy. And so with all the learnings of the, the, you know, apprenticeship return to work programs that we’ve done, we morphed that into the development of a digital SAS platform called Aurora that helps companies do a better job of supporting their Women, engaging their women that are there, that are already in the companies that aren’t making it up in the pipeline.

Addie (6m 57s):
And yesterday was a big moment every year. There’s a famous women in the workplace report that comes out from McKinsey and the lean in foundation. And for the third year in a row, people have talked about how there’s this broken wrong, and that women are getting passed over for promotion at six significantly higher rates, even from individual contributor to that first level of promotion. So if you are thinking about the gender talent pipeline and want to improve it, so that there’s more diversity at every level, it’s not enough to focus on moving women from a senior director level to a VP level or a VP level to a senior VP level.

Addie (7m 42s):
You have to focus on that broken wrong, which is women are just coming into your organization that are there for five or seven years that are looking to advance that for whatever reason can advance. And so we just, we designed and I created the Aurora platform to really help companies ensure that their women flourish at those levels and grow. And so that’s entrepreneurship at its finest, right? Kind of help with another business that is really tackling the same problem from a different angle. Now it’s B to B. So, you know, it’s focused on those same companies and those same corporations, but it’s taking a different approach, leveraging all the learning from replenishing the talent to actually rowing the talent from within the organization.

John (8m 34s):
It’s almost like a perfect model because you can do it both ways, but just what you said, people leave for children, parents who would have thought so many people would have had to leave to be to their parents right now. It happens all the time. So I think it’s kind of interesting that they can approach it both ways and still get inclusion and

Addie (8m 57s):
Exactly. Exactly. And then, and then if you could CA if you can save more of the women that are there, right. Companies do a lot and spend a lot of money on filling jobs. And in fact, some of the talent acquisition, people in many companies are bonused by how quickly they fill a job, it’s called time to fill, but are they looking at how quickly they’re leaving

John (9m 26s):
The retention rate of that?

Addie (9m 27s):
Right. And so how do you focus on making sure people stay and are happy? And if you, you know, if you really understand what it takes to bring somebody back that doesn’t have a skill site, might be an older worker, may not come from the industry with their experience that they’re going into and you can get them to be successful. You certainly can help those people that are in the industries, in those companies do a better job of, you know, feeling a sense of belonging, a sense of connection and feeling that they have avenues to grow and thrive.

John (10m 4s):
Yeah, I’d be curious what level, because I, I have four kids and they’re 21 months of had each of them. And a couple of them were pat of that predictive model where you put your resume in, and if you don’t fit, what company, what sort of company demographic are using those models to weed out candidates?

Addie (10m 26s):
Well, applicant tracking systems across the board are, are, have been designed to make it more efficient, to get those candidates that match those job descriptions. So, you know, you know, on our return to work side, we’re all about taking alternative candidates and putting them into new jobs. That’s definitionally what it is, because if you’ve been out of the workforce for some time, the jobs that are here today, weren’t here five years ago, seven years ago, 10 years ago. A lot of those industries are newer. And so definitionally we’re in a way retrofitting, you know, individuals to new roles, new responsibilities, and new new opportunities.

Addie (11m 12s):
That’s not the way it’s set up. When you have a job description, that’s very defined and an open rec that somebody says, I need a so-and-so that has the following 20 different sets of skills. Now, the research shows that women in general, they won’t apply to a job if they’re not like 90% qualified with, with, you know, checking the boxes off on that, on that rec. Whereas with men, that’s not the case, but all that’s out the window when you’ve had a break, when you have to be more open-minded when you have to understand that you’re going to build skills and go into new areas that you weren’t before. And just thinking about how to leverage that.

Addie (11m 55s):
So we, every day of the week are, you know, transitioning people from certain industries, into other certain roles, into others and having them flex. And I believe at the end of the day, it’s all about potential. And that’s the way I’ve raised my own children. And that’s the way I feel about life and opportunity. It has to be about what you, as the individual can bring and making sure that it gets leveraged, whatever it is. Everybody has superpowers. Everybody has great things to bring the rub comes in. When you put somebody in a job where their skills aren’t being able to be leveraged and they can’t showcase them.

Addie (12m 36s):
And the company can’t leverage them either.

Nathan (12m 39s):
Hmm. That’s fascinating Addy. And I love what you’re, what you’re doing before we go. Is there anything that you want to talk about that’s upcoming or down the road for ReacHire?

Addie (12m 52s):
Well, we didn’t really get as much a chance to talk about the Aurora platform, but you know, it, it’s a highly scalable offering that companies can offer to their employee resource groups. We have rehab access to early career experience. Mid-career experience women of color experience. We have content and experience and community around the maternity journey. And we actually have an emerging leaders kind of product offering that if you really have folks that you’ve identified that are critical emerging leaders, you can, you know, you can grow them, but, but with the world we’re living with hybrid work where it doesn’t look like, you know, even when we go back and hopefully get over this, this next wave and sort of become more of a normal, you know, a work world, people are going to be working hybrid.

Addie (13m 56s):
You know, companies in the last 18, 20 months have hired people all over the country. We certainly have those people are never going to come in the office. How do you get them connected? How do you get them to feel like they’re part of the community? And, and if you don’t do that, they’re just going to walk and go somewhere else. People want to be connected. They want to be affiliated. They want to feel like their contribution makes a difference. And so Aurora was designed from the get-go to be virtual and to be able to help in bringing people together, be a safe, confidential environment, and be affordable for companies to offer an extra layer that could make a big difference to, as John was saying, Grow, you know, RO that retention grow that support, that more individuals from diverse backgrounds can grow and thrive in the, in your organization.

Nathan (14m 52s):
Everyone we’ve been speaking with Addie Swartz, CEO of ReacHire Addie. If people want to get in touch with you, whether they’re there, there may be different channels for this, maybe not, but if they’re a Owner of a business or a CEO, and they’re interested in bringing on Aurora or your services, how would they reach out to versus if they’re, you know, somebody looking to return to work or, or something like that?

Addie (15m 15s):
Sure. So a great place to start is our website, you know, with one H, We have an Aurora section so you could kind of do a deeper dive. You can request a demo if you’re a company and you want to learn more about it. That’s one thing. If you’re a candidate that’s looking to get back to work, we have free webinars all the time. So sign up for our newsletter so that you can be informed as to, you know, how do you upgrade your LinkedIn profile? How do you present yourself and talk about your career break? You know, how do you create community so that you’re not going at it alone?

Addie (15m 55s):
And then, you know, we have an area on the website that it, you know, you can sign up to just get any new jobs that we have posted. So, so it’s an iterative process. Somebody who is thinking about going back to work with a lot of, with a lot of uncertainty, that’s out there, they may, they may not be quite ready, even though they want to learn more and we’re ready for that. So, you know, sign up, learn, take advantage of all our free programming. And by the way, it’s never ever a cost to a candidate or an Aurora experienced person. It’s always the company that’s partnering with us to really, you know, create the on-ramps and create the support systems.

Addie (16m 39s):
So it really costs you nothing, right?

Nathan (16m 42s):
And there’ll be a, there’ll be a link to your website on our, on our website, When we post this interview. John Dustin J E D insurance our co-host, how can people reach you if they want to get in touch with you?

John (16m 55s):
The or email John dot Dustin, D U S T I N G D.

Nathan (17m 8s):
Great. I want to thank,

Addie (17m 10s):
I just said what, I just want to add one more thing. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter and all that. So anyway,

Nathan (17m 18s):
And then we are there as well, a Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, if anybody listening wants to follow some LinkedIn, we’re a very growing and active community there. Of course, Radio Entrepreneurs dot com as well as all the podcast platforms, Spotify, iTunes, Google play, and more. And lastly, of course, YouTube, please subscribe to us there. It helps us immensely. I want to thank all our listeners and thank you, Eddie. Thank you, John. We’ll be right back on Radio Entrepreneurs with another segment.

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