Work for Impact — a talent acquisition platform that attracts and uplifts underserved jobseekers around the world yearning for greater purpose in employment — is a model for purpose-driven companies to emulate.
Work For Impact is a B Corp-certified, on-demand talent platform dedicated to connecting global talent with purpose-driven organizations. We recently spoke with WFI founder and CEO Geoff Hucker, who shared insights into how the world of work is changing — and how purpose-driven businesses and talent are taking advantage of this new momentum.
Engaging a new world of work
WFI was founded largely in response to a sea change on two fronts: Firstly, a wave of organizations committed to creating positive change fueled by a rising tide of ESG-related capital; secondly, an increase in the number of people looking to make an impact through their work in an increasingly gig-ified global employment landscape. In the past two years, the social and financial upheaval resulting from the pandemic pushed a critical mass of individuals out of the office and into the gig economy.
The gig economy grew 33 percent in 2020 — a growth rate eclipsing that of the entire US economy. During the pandemic, businesses increased investments in ESG; but concurrently, the Great Resignation (which evolved into the Great Reshuffle) became a dominant force in the world of work — showing that money may talk; but if it doesn’t align with shifting cultural values, people will walk.
“We need to act upon this momentum,” Hucker said.
Hucker sees the new world of work as a tool to address compounding social and environmental crises. Values are a huge factor in the new work order, he said; but it’s also influenced by market volatility; increased globalization and digitalization; and pervasive, systemic, social inequities. In the emergent talent market, human capital is the currency, and embedding human capital in value chains is key to making it in the post-pandemic economy.
Hucker identified three key traits employers must adopt in order to be an active player — and winner — the new world of work.
An increasingly volatile recruitment landscape demands a more agile hybrid talent model, Hucker said. He sees qualified, on-demand talent becoming a critical component in organizations’ operational performance and competitive advantage.
“I think the hybrid solution is really the future,” he said. “It really opens up corporations to global talent pools and not limiting them to those within their own jurisdictions.”
Dynamic hiring is a buffer against talent shortage; it also facilitates cultural diversity and opens previously unexplored market opportunities. One WFI client, for example, leveraged the platform’s global talent pool to make inroads into new, international markets. Some clever time zone management by another WFI client allows 24/7, 365-day productivity from its globally sourced team. Time and time again, Hucker sees that when companies large and small adopt a dynamic talent approach, they don’t go back.
“There’s a global talent pool that’s very easy to work with in a clear, transparent and ethical way,” he said. “It can really help your brand access global talent, reduce costs, and really support people globally.”
Organizations that don’t wear purpose on their sleeves won’t cut it in the new world of work. Last year, nearly 48 million workers left their jobs, and 17.6 million U.S. workers quit their jobs between January and April 2022. Feeling powerless to enact positive change through work is one of the salient drivers. Though it may have evolved, the Great Resignation continues in 2022 — with monthly quits not dipping below 4.26 million since the start of the year.
Work-life balance and purpose are the buried treasure jobseekers are after; but few organizations are capable of delivering meaningful ways to create purpose-driven value in work, Hucker says.
“When you connect passion and purpose, it’s phenomenal what you can get,” he asserts.
A recent McKinsey report sums it up succinctly: Help employees find purpose in their work, or watch them leave.
Much like carbon accounting, Hucker said, sourcing talent must also be done with the highest possible standards. Hyper-connected networks now allow companies to transparently and ethically draw from diverse backgrounds, regions, worldviews and socio-economic statuses.
The best jobs have usually been found — and filled — in high-income countries where education, upskilling, social capital and technology underwrite a person’s ability to thrive. WFI is working to change this — actively supporting upskilling and expanding the global talent pool for young people in low-income countries. Such talent accountability and investment are key to meeting the demands of the new world of work, Hucker said.
He said he envisions WFI as a model talent-acquisition platform for purpose-driven brands to emulate. In WFI’s case, embedding dynamic, impactful and ethical talent acquisition is the secret sauce to attracting and uplifting the disenfranchised jobseekers around the world yearning for greater purpose in employment.
“We are dedicated to creating opportunities for folks and organizations across the world — a mutually beneficial talent platform done in a clear, transparent and wholly ethical way,” Hucker said. “Where you’re born in the world shouldn’t dictate what opportunities are available to you.”