Helios HR partners with United Way of the National Capital Area to provide career transition training

Helios HR recently collaborated with United Way of the National Capital Area (United Way NCA) to address the workforce development needs of community members and participants at the South County Financial Empowerment Center in Alexandria, VA. The partnership aimed to support individuals' career transitions, particularly in the Information Technology (IT) field, by offering valuable skills training and professional guidance.

United Way NCA, driven by their commitment to promoting health, education, and economic opportunities for everyone in the community, operates Financial Empowerment Centers (FECs) that provide free access to high-quality financial services and guidance in a welcoming environment. The participants of the FECs, hailing from diverse backgrounds and experiences in the workforce, fall under the ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) category.

With many program participants venturing into IT careers and attending the FEC to gain knowledge in Google IT & CompTIA A+ and AWS Cloud, Helios HR stepped in to contribute their expertise. The Helios HR team volunteered their skills in resume writing, leveraging platforms like LinkedIn and other professional networks, and shared insider tips on preparing for phone, virtual, and in-person interviews. To enhance the learning experience, teams comprising two volunteers and two program participants conducted mock interviews, enabling participants to receive feedback from seasoned recruiters.

Samantha Wessel, Manager of Volunteer Engagement with United Way said, “The breakout room conversations were thoughtful and engaging, as were the large group discussions. Learners appreciated having an opportunity to connect with multiple experts, receive feedback and then practice again in the second session, and truly benefitted from the encouragement and positivity you [Helios HR volunteers] shared with them!”

“Our team was so moved and excited to have these conversations with the program participants. They loved the opportunity to share industry tips to help individuals further their career opportunities, and look forward to future sessions with the United Way NCA team,” said Natalie O’Laughlin, Director of Marketing and Communications at Helios HR.

Prior to their involvement in the workforce development skills initiative, Lavette Sims, Director of Corporate Engagement at United Way NCA, joined the Helios HR team for an insightful Poverty Assimilation workshop. This workshop aimed to educate and raise awareness among the team about the daily lives of our ALICE neighbors. The workshop inspired the Helios HR team to utilize their human resources and recruiting expertise to provide mentorship and guidance to individuals seeking financial empowerment in the community.