[WATCH] On a recent edition of Inside INdiana Business, Gerry Dick interviewed Ascend Indiana President and CEO Jason Kloth, EmployIndy President and CEO Angela Carr-Klitzsch and Indianapolis Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Angela Smith-Jones about the Rapid Re-Employment Response free online tool.

INDIANAPOLIS (August 25, 2020) – More than 120,000 residents in Marion County filed for unemployment between March and June due to COVID-19, but a new resource launching today by EmployIndy and Ascend Indiana provides a central location for those dislocated workers to connect with available jobs or training opportunities. Job seekers will log into an online technology platform called the Ascend Network. Then, the job seeker will follow a streamlined process to connect with needed career services and get individualized support to help them find meaningful employment or training.

The Rapid Re-Employment Response plan is a coordinated effort by the Regional Workforce Partnership (RWP) comprised of nonprofits, employers, state agencies, and community organizations. At the request of Mayor Joe Hogsett, the RWP has turned its collaborative efforts toward a unified plan to assist residents of Indianapolis in getting back to work as quickly and safely as possible.

“As the hub for state and regional economic activity, Indianapolis has faced unique economic consequences from the pandemic, including the impact of stricter business restrictions, a decline in conventions and tourism, and job loss across diverse sectors,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett. “The Rapid Re-employment Response plan is a strong step to empower our workers, especially the most vulnerable, to re-enter the workforce and further their careers.”

Job seekers who live or want to work in Marion County can visit www.employindy.org/rapidreemploymentresponse where they will create a login and follow a few short steps to direct them toward the most relevant service, whether that is connecting with jobs immediately or receiving career readiness resources such as skills training. In either path, job seekers will receive personalized support to help navigate their path to applying for a job.

“Career services combined with a proven and robust platform means that EmployIndy can better help job seekers during this challenging time,” said Angela Carr Klitzsch, president and CEO, EmployIndy. “By connecting individuals in real time to open jobs; subsidized in-demand training; and partners like WorkOne Indy and community-based organizations, job seekers have many resources that can help them navigate a path forward.”

To meet changing workforce demands, Ascend and EmployIndy have adapted the Ascend Network to serve job seekers from a variety of educational backgrounds and experience. This will allow employers to connect with a broader pool of talent by rapidly re-employing individuals who have been displaced by the pandemic. Over a million dollars in initial funding for this effort was made possible by federal CARES Act spending appropriated by the City-County Council.

“Through this effort, we will connect job seekers with higher paying jobs in the region, which will mean a faster economic recovery for all residents,” said Jason Kloth, president and CEO, Ascend Indiana. “We must create systems to rebuild our post-pandemic economy so that everyone, especially those left out of economic recovery in the past, have access to opportunities that will lead to prosperity for them and their families.”

The RWP consists of the following organizations: City of Indianapolis, EmployIndy, Ascend Indiana, Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP), Conexus Indiana, Indiana Commission for Higher Education, Indy Chamber, Indiana Chamber, Skillful, Indiana Office of Work-Based Learning, Indiana Department of Workforce Development and the United Way of Central Indiana.

For additional information on the Rapid Re-Employment Response, please visit www.employindy.org/rapidreemploymentresponse.

Social Media: Rapid Re-Employment Response
Hashtag: #RapidReemployIndy

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About EmployIndy
EmployIndy guides the local workforce ecosystem and makes strategic investments to remove barriers to quality employment for underserved and underrepresented residents. Our vision is for all Marion County residents to have access to services and training necessary to secure a livable wage and grow in a career that meets employer demand for talent. As the workforce development board for Marion County, guided by 24 business, civic, education and nonprofit community leaders, EmployIndy invests $20 million in public, private and philanthropic funds for both youth and adults annually. Learn more at employindy.org.

About Ascend Indiana
Ascend Indiana is the talent and workforce development initiative of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (CICP), an organization that brings together industry, higher education and philanthropic leaders to advance our region’s prosperity and growth. Ascend’s vision is for Indiana to be a place of economic opportunity for all. To achieve this, Ascend bridges talent and communication gaps by creating connectivity between people and employers. Ascend has focused its efforts around three core priorities: connecting job seekers to career opportunities through the Ascend Network talent platform, catalyzing transformative employer and education partnerships through Ascend Services, and informing workforce research and public policy through thought leadership. To learn more, visit ascendindiana.com.