A new effort to attract top tech talent has launched in Indiana. TechPoint, the state’s technology accelerator, is teaming up with Indianapolis-based TMap LLC, to find former Hoosiers currently working out of state in the tech industry and bring them back to Indiana. Through the initiative, the partners will identify the top 25 applicants who will be invited to a red carpet weekend this fall that will feature meetings with potential employers and events showcasing quality of life benefits in Indiana in an effort to entice them to relocate.
Merillat Flowers, senior director of college-to-career programs for TechPoint, tells Inside INdiana Business a creative approach is needed in the fight for talent.
"Talent is in demand; tech talent, in particular is in demand across the country and there is a national fight and competition for that talent," said Flowers. "So there’s a real need to get creative on solutions and ways for communities to attract talent. I think we are trying to be innovative and at the forefront of those opportunities. Indiana has really winning proposition there. Our theory is that we just need to do a better job of getting the word out there and if we do that, we will actually go a long way in solving those issues for our tech community in Indiana."
All applicants for the program will be presented with job opportunities through the TechPoint Job Board. Flowers says the hope for the partners is that the initiative serves as the beginning of a movement in talent attraction.
"It’s going to take a lot of players and obviously a lot more than just 25 individuals, but our hope is that this gets a real start going, that we can attract more applications than that, but really find top talent to bring them to companies to also pique companies interest, and that this could be the starting gate and down the road, hopefully we’re looking at hundreds and thousands that are engaging in something like this."
Despite the limited availability for the red carpet weekend, TechPoint President and Chief Executive Officer Mike Langellier expects additional employment matches will be made through the process.
"We know from experience that when non-Hoosiers visit Indiana and spend any time at all here, they want to be here," Langellier said in a news release. "Former Hoosiers who already have an affinity for their home state just need a reason to come back, and we have hundreds of good-paying reasons. It’s entirely possible that some of the people we will attract won’t recognize Indianapolis when they come back to visit. We’re consistently rated as a great place to eat, to live and to play, and our tech community is a nationally recognized success story."
TechPoint says the effort will also include on-the-ground visits to areas in the U.S. where large groups of Hoosiers currently live. However, Flowers says tech talent from anywhere are being encouraged to apply, whether they have a connection to Indiana or not.
Flowers says in order for Indiana to be considered one of the top tech hubs in the country, the state has to be forward with its talent solutions and prove it has a robust workforce.
"This initiative in particular is targeting mid-to-senior level talent and helping fill some of those leadership roles that our tech companies need. So I think the long-term hope here is that we’re able to migrate a significant quantity of talent to help fill those roles, which ultimately will help drive the entire talent pipeline and make our ability to retain talent from entry-level positions that are coming out of universities or bootcamp trajectories more successfully as well."
You can learn more about the initiative by clicking here.
Flowers says a creative approach is needed in the fight for talent.