Y&R Group Helps Parents Re-enter the Workforce

Madeline%20Park%20headshot“Careers pause. Talent doesn’t.” That’s a line from the web site for Young & Rubicam Group’s new 12-week career reboot program, PowerOn, that nicely sums up an initiative designed to help parents and caregivers re-enter the workforce. “It’s time for our industry to embrace this untapped pool of talent,” says Madeline Park, Chief of Talent and Operations, Young & Rubicam Group. “So often the decision to depart from the workforce to focus on family or childcare unfairly impedes opportunities for growth down the line.” Park talked to Cynopsis about a program that offers participants hands-on experience, resources, training – and, optimally, a new job. (For more info, go here.)

Cynopsis: What are the skills people who have been absent from the workforce most need to brush up on?

Madelin Park: Every candidate is going to be unique in what they’ve done since they left the industry. We build on their diverse foundations by offering training that equips them with the tools and skills they need as they re-enter an industry that is constantly evolving and growing. The PowerOn program offers a curriculum that helps participants brush up and build their skills in a variety of areas – ranging from business writing and storytelling, to time management, social marketing and updated software knowledge as well as emerging technology. 

Cynopsis: What are the advantages of hiring from this group?

Park: We know that the caregiver population is comprised of disproportionately more women than men – this means high-performing women are dropping out of the industry to devote time to their families. When women make up just 25% of executive roles, we see PowerOn as an opportunity to address the gap and build diverse and inclusive cultures within Y&R Group.

Their past career successes in our industry, combined with their time as caregivers, brings a wealth of knowledge and insights that are enormously beneficial to clients. Having taken a step away, they come back to offer fresh perspectives, ideas and approaches.

Cynopsis: What do you find is the biggest challenge in filling open job positions?

Park: The biggest challenge is breaking down unconscious bias. When recruiters see a gap in your resume, particularly when that gap is so lengthy, they may not always consider the possibilities. We want to break down these misconceptions, and help these talented professionals jump back into the industry.

In addition, our industry is one that changes rapidly – even the most skilled current employees must still engage in learning and development to keep up. Our program ensures that we address the skill gap, and hopefully help these program participants excel as long term employees with Young & Rubicam Group.

The Cynsiders column is a platform for industry leaders to reach out to colleagues, followers, and the public at large. In their own words and in targeted Q&As, columnists address breaking news, issues of the day, and the larger changes going on in the ever-evolving world of television, video and digital. Cynsiders columns live on Cynopsis’ main page and are promoted across all daily newsletters. We welcome readers’ comments, queries, and column ideas at [email protected]. 

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