O4AY Launches First Virtual Hiring Event O4AY kicks off series of virtual hiring events in London and Toronto with local community service providers

July 7, 2020

Opportunity For All Youth recently hosted its first ever virtual hiring event, partnering with The Home Depot and our London community service providers, Youth Opportunities Unlimited (YOU).

The Home Depot seeks youth talent

With our in-person hiring events and face-to-face workshops coming to a halt in March due to COVID-19, The Home Depot needed to find a way to quickly fill open Customer Service Associate roles at their local store in London, Ontario.

(photo from O4AY hiring event in September 2019)

YOU finds NEET talent in London

Within a week, Youth Opportunities Unlimited prepared a pool of NEET youth candidates that were eager to interview for the open roles at The Home Depot.

Virtual Coaches Corner

The Coaches Corner - an O4AY hallmark service at in-person events - provides a space for youth to meet with a coach for any last-minute preparation and to calm pre-interview jitters. Knowing the importance of this touchpoint, a virtual Coaches Corner was scheduled right before the hiring event, and had a team of coaches from O4AY and YOU on hand for any youth that wanted that extra prep. O4AY piloted the virtual coaches corner with great success.

Progress with barrier-free hiring

O4AY candidates did not have to fill out their online application. Instead, they were able to book an interview directly with our community partners. Candidates also had a chance to go over the interview questions and requirements with someone, so they would know what to expect.

90% Hiring Rate in London

With an over 90% candidates receiving on-the-spot employment offers, the event was a success! We replicated the same virtual hiring model with The Home Depot location in Toronto with Youth Employment Services (YES) and 82% of candidates were hired. Each store was able to extend job offers on the spot and communicate written feedback for candidates who did not receive a job offer for future improvements.

Participant Testimonials

“The Home Depot online job event was overwhelming at first seeing all the potential candidates in the chat room. The coordinator was informative regarding what’s to be expected as he sent us through to the interviewer. The interview experience was comfortable and free-flowing due to the receptive approach of the interviewer and overall process.”- K. Smith, youth candidate and new Home Depot employee (stock photo)
“Our first virtual hiring event focusing on NEET youth was a success for Home Depot. We couldn’t be happier to continue to help youth by providing them opportunities and supporting youth initiatives through our Home Depot Foundation, whose goal is to eliminate youth homelessness.” - Andrew Cunningham, Director, Talent Acquisition & HR Centralized Services, The Home Depot Canada
“The Home Depot Digital Hiring Event hosted by O4AY in London was an excellent success! 9 out of 10 youth that participated were given an amazing opportunity to work for Home Depot and reach their potential. Youth Opportunities Unlimited was honored to have worked with both Home Depot and O4AY to create a positive space for young people to find meaningful opportunities. The youth are very happy and motivated to get back into their communities and begin working. Even during a pandemic, it was such a unique opportunity that we were so proud to be connected to. YOU looks forward to continued partnerships with Home Depot, other coalition members and O4AY” - Alyssa Pallock, Business Liason, Youth Opportunities Unlimited


Created with an image by Frank Romero - "untitled image"