Eleven internationally-trained professionals faced IT employers to pitch for jobs in BC’s first ever Talent Den Tuesday afternoon. This was all part of the Future U: IT Skills in Tech Jobs conference held at the Vancouver Public library in partnership with Vancity Credit Union, ISSofBC’s Career Paths and In-TAC in Ottawa.

Based on the popular TV show Dragon’s Den, Talent Den brings together employers and diverse IT talent. Hiring employers are invited to hear one-minute pitches, then ask questions and decide about interviews, all within a fast-paced one-hour session.

Half of the candidates who had the opportunity to pitch were part of a cohort from ISSofBC’s Advanced Literacy & Essential Skills (ALES) in the Workplace program designed to help participants improve how they speak and write in order to be successful in an IT career.

“With support and coaching from the ALES team, they developed and refined their elevator pitches and were ready to step out of their comfort zone and present themselves. They all met the challenge and impressed the audience, the employers, the ALES team, and most of all themselves,” said Laura Pasut, Employment Facilitator/Registrar for the ALES Program at ISSofBC.

Successful candidates from the Talent Den will have the opportunity for a full job interview at one of the participating IT companies – SkyHive, Traction on Demand, Unbounce or Cvent.

“It’s a very useful training not only in pitch preparation but also in public speaking. Even if I don’t receive a job offer it was absolutely worth it to expand my comfort zone and face people in charge of hiring and the audience,” said one participant.

Over 150 people participated in the full-day conference aimed at providing information on skills needed now and in the future in the booming IT sector. Speakers drilled down in areas of growth including blockchain, web development, cybersecurity, big data, artificial intelligence, and cloud computing.

A special thank you to all the speakers, employers, participants and volunteers for making this event such a success.

Learn more about ISSofBC’s Advanced Literacy & Essential Skills in the Workplace program.

View photos from the event