The Challenge: Despite the emergence of online job-matching sites over the past decade, both employers and workers continue to have persistent problems with search frictions, skills mismatch and uneasiness from Veterans to use untrusted intermediaries. Although new companies such as LinkedIn Corp. and Indeed Inc. have simplified the process of identifying work-seeker openings and attracting employer applicants, by proliferating the total number of applications per job-seeker and per job opening, online job boards have also created new apprehensions.
Costs remain especially high for low-skilled, low-wage work seekers, who are the least likely to have access to and experience in emerging digital technology and are the most likely to spend large amounts of time on their smartphones completing various burdensome job applications. These quest frictions lead to a persistent skills mismatch between employees and jobs, among other factors. Unemployment should have decreased with the growth of the internet, which expanded the knowledge available to both employers and workers, because the dominant paradigm models unemployment as a feature of search and matching frictions. But there was no materialization of this scientific forecast.
The Need: In response to the above mentioned challenge, there is need for a universal, easy-to-use, accessible, comprehensive, secure and scalable tool, preferably web-based, to help transitioning service members (and Veterans) to discover their “career DNA” prior to separation, map their competencies (both hard and soft skills), translate them into language potential employers can use for candidate selection, with the ultimate objective of matching prospective employees with available and good-paying jobs that satisfy their professional development and life needs while timely responding to employers’ need for a well-qualified and stable workforce. .
The Research: DOLVETS cites that veterans complete their military service with unique and technical skillsets that bring value to all sectors of the economy but can encounter challenges framing their experience and skills for civilian employers. American businesses also report that they are also missing an opportunity to attract and retain a capable, competent workforce, and recognize the value in veterans and spouses.
Many job boards, veteran hiring programs, and other initiatives exist, but there are disparate platforms of valuable data. Traversing across these resources can be overwhelming for both first-time job-seeking veterans and businesses with limited time to fill urgent needs. Additionally, most job search tools forService members are based purely on military occupational specialties, which do not accurately represent the breadth of experiences veterans have.
There remains a lack of clear pathways from military service to particular jobs—there is no comprehensive roadmap as to which credential, academic degree or job placement program would best help a veteran reach a particular career goal.
The Solution – To solve this problem, NVTSI turned to two PhD’s from MIT who conceived and developed Job-Set, a smartphone-based application that uses Artificial Intelligence to match veterans with jobs. Job-Set provides virtual (technology-based) solutions to improve job matching and assessment strategies that accelerates employment for veterans.
The Job-Set App allows a Transitioning Service Members, veterans, and Guardsmen to be matched to job without the use of a keyword or prior knowledge of what jobs are best, both locally and out-of-area. Just like a dating app, the user sees as output a percentage matchup between a user and a job, with a side-by-side skill-gap comparison of the two. The app then provides an automatically built resume, and an opportunity to apply for the job, right within the app.
Job-Set leverages technology borrowed from other disciplines – namely the dating app matching technology, to provide new, more efficient, and effective way of directing resources. It is also a scalable solution, with the App available to transitioning service members, veterans, Guard/Reserves – free of charge – on Android or Apple phones or tablets. As a standalone product, it provides speed, agility and scale needed to accelerate employment for workers desperately in need of help. However, as part of an integrated solution within the job-placement community, it has the potential to substantially increase the effectiveness, scale and/or capacity of existing workforce system programs and funding streams.
Job-Set’s algorithms also provide unique insight into workforce and labor market employment statistics information, by providing local regional and national labor market area skill gaps related to local occupations in demand. It also provides information about how the local workforce development area is performing on local performance accountability measures, as well as performance information relating to the area’s delivery system by analyzing 1) the skills previously acquired by the cohorts as a group, 2) the skills acquired by the group by participating in the system, and 3) the skills needed in the local labor market.