Calling Millennial Job Seekers: Ohio Has Your Back

Calling Millennial Job Seekers: Ohio Has Your Back

Innovative programs and opportunities cater to helping millennials find jobs

While the national unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been in years at 3.9 percent, the millennial unemployment rate is around 3 times higher, at 12.8 percent. Though these numbers might not give young job seekers something to smile about, the state of Ohio is working hard to change the employment landscape.

For job hunters, Ohio has long been known for its commitment to bringing new work to the region, whether through the Ohio Third Frontier initiative to support startups and entrepreneurs, its low cost of living — around 10 percent lower than the national average — or ease of access. The region also has Ohio Means Jobs, a resource for career opportunities and planning. Another thing to add to the list? The state’s ability to attract and retain talent for this specific age group. We’ve gathered a list of organizations and platforms throughout Ohio that prove the region’s ability to foster spaces for millennial job seekers.

Accenture + Columbus State Community College

As one of the leading professional services companies in the nation, Accenture’s partnership with Columbus State Community College is one destined to help students and recent graduates well  into the future. The year-long apprenticeship is located at the Accenture innovation hub in Columbus and is designed to give each class hands-on experience with technology. Not only does this opportunity have the potential to turn into full-time employment after graduation, but it also helps students build a variety of skills as they work with software engineering technologies including agile, DevOps and more.

Festo’s Mechatronics Apprenticeship Program Partnership

The future of manufacturing is now, and many companies are finding the need for employees who have specialized skills as they begin to use tools like 3D printing and nanotechnology. As a hub for technology and manufacturing, Ohio was the right place for Germany-based Festo to launch an apprenticeship program in mechatronics to combine the study of mechanical, electrical and computer controls with on-the-job experience. This program is unique in that it allows participants to work while obtaining an associate degree and offers millennials options outside of the four-year college plan.


Like Festo, Anexsis’ app Peerro can help millennials find and develop the right career paths, even without a degree. The user-friendly platform matches job seekers with entry-level positions and also offers actionable steps to increase pay after securing a job. The app is also employer-facing. By using the platform, companies can note which applicants have signaled their intent to go through additional training and certifications to advance beyond entry-level positions. Built in Columbus with support from  Ohio Third Frontier partners, the app’s focus on millennial employment aims to ease the anxiety of the job search and provide an answer to the resume “black hole” of other job applications platforms.


IT company Hyland in northeast Ohio has been making quite a buzz. Just look to Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For,” which has featured Hyland for the past four years. The content management software company combines technology with employee perks that attract millennials like flex days, a wellness center, on-site daycare, healthy food options and tuition reimbursement. These perks and the growing demand for Hyland’s solutions have attracted a lot of millennial interest — in fact, this group makes up around 44 percent of their workforce.


Based in Kettering, Marxent has been called one of Dayton’s “modern-day innovators.” It’s not hard to see why. The company is one of the top virtual and augmented reality companies and has worked with everyone from Macy’s to Lowe’s. With a workforce made up of 70 percent millennials, Marxent’s team operations manager identified their culture as the reason people want to work, and stay, at Marxent. It’s not just about fun either — Marxent focuses on empowering their millennial workers by giving them room to grow and a flexible PTO policy.


Talk about connections — UpDayton’s collaboration with colleges like Wright State University, University of Dayton and Sinclair Community College help recruit young professionals to connect them to local companies. The relationship goes both ways — by giving millennials the opportunity to connect with established employers, UpDayton is hoping to empower them to create the Dayton they want to see by starting businesses and getting involved in the community.  The group makes flourishing entrepreneurs’ dreams accessible by hosting a summit where young leaders can receive one thousand dollars to bring their ideas to fruition.

StartupUC Student Incubator

For millennials who are still in school and feel the entrepreneurial itch, the University of Cincinnati’s StartupUC incubator program brings together interdisciplinary teams of students to help launch their startups. And for those all-too-familiar post-graduation blues? The program teaches students to apply for funding and grants and offers avenues for community mentorship. They also make connections with the StartupCincy ecosystem which includes the likes of their partner, CincyTech. With these kinds of resources, it’s no wonder that 60 percent of millennials consider themselves entrepreneurs — and now they have a space to make their vision a reality.

Ohio’s thriving millennial job scene isn’t all about the usual benefits like being easy to navigate and the home of an ice cream trail. With a proactive, forward-thinking job scene, Ohio is leading the way in innovating the employment landscape to give millennials an exciting place to grow and stay.

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