The impact of the coronavirus pandemic in Australia has caused many businesses to close their doors either temporarily or permanently, leaving hundreds of thousands of people without jobs.
The rising rate of unemployment due to COVID-19 prompted alum Adam Jacobs (BA '07 BCom '07) to talk with employers including Woolworths, Qantas and JP Morgan to understand exactly what they were going through and to find out how he could help.
Whilst one of the biggest issues for some companies was having to stand down staff, there were also cases where increases in demand required some companies to hire more staff. Within one week of putting a call out on LinkedIn to see if their initial findings were being seen across the board, The Hatch Exchange was launched in March 2020 using the existing Hatch team and technology.
Hatch was initially established by Adam and Chaz Heitner (co-founder of Zip Co) in 2017 to create opportunities for university students to do meaningful paid work while they study. The company has helped a number of University of Sydney international MBA students find employment and internships in Australia while completing their degree.
Our main goal is to enable Australian businesses to rapidly hire stood down workers from some of the nations most trusted employers impacted by COVID-19.
Creating a simple, streamlined and user-friendly experience for both employers and employees was the philosophy behind The Hatch Exchange. Since its launch, over 150 companies have signed up and more than 10,000 stood-down staff have registered on the platform.
"Not only are we helping to provide a current solution to those affected by COVID-19, but we are also preparing those whose jobs won't return to understand how their skills and knowledge can be transferred into something new," said Adam.
Businesses looking to hire are matched through a science-based approach with motivated employees within 72 hours.
"The feedback to date has been overwhelmingly positive, with hiring managers noting the quality of the candidates they've received has exceeded their expectations," said Adam.
The Hatch Exchange has seen a willingness from workers to do something different to their previous roles; with pilots transitioning into call centres and hospitality workers joining banks such as Westpac in customer support roles. The ability to match workers based on their transferable skills means they can use their existing talents in new ways to add real value to the businesses they join.
The future of the Australian workforce relies on agility, flexibility, re-skilling and upskilling. At times like this, we can innovate and start to rebuild the economy with transferable skills.
Working with partners such as Generation Australia, The Hatch Exchange has also been able to provide additional support through re-skilling programs that will help more displaced workers move to where the economy needs them to be. As tech and digital skills are now essential for the jobs of tomorrow, offering access to programs and courses related to areas such as web development will help kickstart new career paths.
Learn more about how our staff, students and alumni are taking initiative against COVID-19.