It’s no secret that unemployment has reached record highs due to the coronavirus pandemic. Numerous media articles have related how black and Latinx workers have been among those most hurt.
A comment on Twitter got Kofi Frimpong ’11 wondering if this were also true in the tech industry and related startups like Yelp and Eventbrite. That curiosity led to a list, with 252 names as of May 21, of professionals from across the country who have lost posts in sales, marketing, design and more. Frimpong is sharing it with recruiters in his network and encouraging others to do the same.
As a cofounder of the startup Socianado, which promotes organizational diversity and inclusivity, the list is a way to help others out, Frimpong said. Socianado matches employer brand teams to organizations to create monthly content featuring employees, workplace, diversity and culture.
“These are very talented people, from so many great companies,” Frimpong said of the names gathered. “I was hoping (by publishing the list) a couple of people might get hired.”
In fact, that’s all he’s asked of recruiters and those named when they’ve contacted him — there are no fees involved. “Let me know if someone’s hired,” he said he tells those who ask, “so I can share.”
Frimpong’s “gut feeling” first got him started looking at companies like AirBnB and Uber that published names of those given pink slips. Then he dug through LinkedIn profiles to determine who might come from an underrepresented group. After coming up with about 50 names, he posted the list on LinkedIn. It racked up some 25,000 views, he said.
“I didn’t know this was going to generate buzz,” Frimpong said.
Frimpong moved the list to Socianado and opened it up for people to add their names, too. He’s heard from several who have signed on to say thank you, and from recruiters as well, including contact from Google and Facebook asking for a downloaded copy.
Socionado also is open to ways to improve the effort and asks for suggestions on the website. For those who sign up or those looking for talent to hire, it adds: “Let’s all help.”
To view the Socionado list, click here.