Skills for America’s Future is a national expansion initiative operated by Skills for Chicagoland’s Future (Skills). Since 2013, Skills sites in Chicago and Rhode Island have connected over 13,000 unemployed and underemployed job seekers to open roles at leading companies committed to diverse hiring. In the process, we have generated more than $307.3 million of cumulative economic impact.
In 2021, Skills announced a $10 million fundraising initiative to bring our jobs-first workforce development model to 25 total sites over the next ten years. Learn more about the Skills network and our impact at https://www.skillsforchicagolandsfuture.com/national-expansion.
Skills seeks a personable and detail-orientated candidate with a proven track record of managing a wide range of external stakeholders within a portfolio of affiliated expansion sites. As Skills expands its model to new markets, the Senior Associate, National Expansion, will serve as the day-to-day liaison between Skills’ National Expansion team and affiliate sites while supporting the Senior Manager of National Partnerships to integrate new sites into Skills’ national network and providing value to key stakeholders in each location.
The Senior Associate will aid the Senior Manager of National Partnerships in supporting the unique needs for each new site as they launch and thereafter. To-date, Skills has two locations in Chicago and Rhode Island, with a strategy to scale up to 25 total sites over the next ten years.
The Senior Associate is a new position at Skills that will report directly to the Senior Manager of National Partnerships as part of a growing National Expansion team. This position is based in Chicago. The Senior Associate will help execute, manage, and maintain relationships with expansion sites both virtually and in-person, with some travel, when required.
- Support the expansion strategies to scale up to 25 total demonstration sites over the next 10 years through project management and technical assistance, both externally and internally.
- Execute workplans created by the Senior Manager of National Partnerships for the launch and success of new sites.
- Work with the Senior Manager of National Partnerships to act as the day-to-day point of contact for communication with affiliate sites to ensure long-term success.
- Act as “eyes” on the ground to National Expansion team, particularly the Senior Manager of National Partnerships, while proactively communicating anticipated blockers with new sites.
- Assist Senior Manager of National Partnerships in preparing progress reports and updates for affiliate sites, which will be used in report-outs to key stakeholders.
- Help to create data-driven content and material for internal and external audiences related to sites, including but not limited to marketing materials, PowerPoint presentations, and content for grant proposals.
- Collaborate with the National Expansion Training Team to facilitate the adoption of Skills’ model by affiliate sites, helping to embed Skills into their structures and desired vision.
- Provide support on other National Expansion projects, as needed.
- Bachelor’s degree preferred with course work or professional experience in communications, business management, nonprofit management, social services, or external affairs.
- 3+ years of project management, management consulting, customer service, client services or sales experience.
- Disciplined project management skills to ensure high service levels, consistent performance, and timely completion of deliverables for local sites.
- Demonstrated track record of external partnership and relationship management.
- Ability to connect and build trust with a variety of stakeholders and external audiences.
- Ability to manage multiple tasks and stakeholders in different cities simultaneously.
- Demonstrated experience managing projects with multiple goals from planning through execution.
- Strong oral and written communication skills – speaks the language of multiple audience.
- Ability to synthesize large amounts of information.
- Comfort and ability to adapt to the evolving needs and demands of Skills’ National Expansion priorities.
- Detail-oriented, with an ability to collaborate within a team and work autonomously when needed.
- Enthusiasm for working in a start-up within a well-established organization.
- Proficient with Microsoft Office Suite.
- Familiarity with Request for Proposal processes.
- Knowledge or experience in workforce development preferred, but not required.
- Experience in a non-profit is a plus.
- Passion for Skills’ Guiding Principles:
- Enthusiasm for the Mission - We are individually and collectively motivated and energized by our deep passion for putting unemployed individuals into jobs through a model that embraces our employers and our job seekers.
- Equity – The collective identity of our people reflects and represents the community we serve. We are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion and will engage our diverse range of stakeholders to positively impact economic mobility.
- Integrity - We are driven by our personal ethics and our collective moral compass pointed towards always acting with integrity and requiring this of those around us.
- Change - We are flexible individually and agile as an organization, driven by the evolving demands of our stakeholders.
- Intellectual Curiosity - We are innovators, built on the foundation of curiosity about how to help others and are driven daily to continually evolve solutions that moves Skills forward.
- Impact - We are focused on the goal of positively impacting economic mobility by using the Skills model to place unemployed into jobs; the process drives the output – we celebrate results rather than tasks and are driven by our missteps to learn and grow.
- Data (approach / mindset) - Everything we do is because of and supported by data - it drives and guides our decision-making process.
Staff members expected to be in-person at one of Skills’ Chicago offices (Loop, Englewood, or North Lawndale) 2-3 days per week and remote the remaining 2-3 days.