Employers big and small seek IT talent at job fair

Developing Cleveland's workforce means finding and nurturing home-grown brainpower and fostering relationships. To that end, an upcoming tech-centric job fair will give local IT talent a chance to meet and impress Northeast Ohio employers seeking out new talent and staff.
The name of the free event, Linking IT Talent to Opportunity, says it all. Scheduled for April 20 from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at the Independence Civic Center, 6363 Selig Blvd., the job fair is set to connect over 200 IT professionals, college students and recent graduates with two dozen companies needing software engineers, technical consultants, web developers and other technology-related employees. The job event is presented by Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) and the Northeast Ohio Council on Higher Education (NOCHE) as part of TechWeek 2016OHTec’s annual initiative to promote and support the regional IT industry.
"This is our attempt to connect talent with opportunities, and make sure that talent stays here," says Vince Adamus, GCP's vice president of real estate and business development.

Though most participating businesses delve directly in software and network solutions, Sherwin-Williams and Medical Mutual will also be on hand, illuminating the regional need for tech talent across various industries, Adamus says.
About 67 percent of software jobs nationwide are with non-tech businesses, according to a 2011 Georgetown University workforce report on science, engineering, technology and math (STEM) employment in the U.S.
"Larger companies have an IT component they're hiring for," says Adamus.
GCP's networking effort, now in its fifth year, will offer attendees a range of entry- to mid-level positions. Job hunters are expected to dress professionally and bring their resumes for short meet-and-greets with hiring managers.
"Companies are not just gauging interest levels here; they're actually looking to hire," Adamus says.
As businesses expand in conjunction with a falling unemployment rate, would-be IT workers can fill a widening tech vacuum projected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to have 1.4 million unfilled positions by 2020. The local numbers tell their own story. In 2014 alone, Cuyahoga County employers advertised more than 6,000 open software development jobs.
Ultimately, career fair proponents want to keep jobseekers in town, whether they're fresh from school or seasoned professionals seeking a new and exciting occupation.
"The IT segment is growing quickly," says Adamus. "We want to assist and facilitate that growth." 

Read more articles by Douglas J. Guth.

Douglas J. Guth is a Cleveland Heights-based freelance writer and journalist. In addition to being senior contributing editor at FreshWater, his work has been published by Midwest Energy News, Kaleidoscope Magazine and Think, the alumni publication of Case Western Reserve University. A die-hard Cleveland sports fan, he also writes for the cynically named (yet humorously written) blog Cleveland Sports Torture. At FreshWater, he contributes regularly to the news and features departments, as well as works on regular sponsored series features.