HIREDTexas traces its roots back to a meeting of workers laid off in the Great Recession of 2008. Employers all over the Central Texas area were laying off employees by the thousands.
Workforce Solutions, an agent of the Texas Workforce Commission, held a weekly meeting called Career Connections. The meeting provided information for job searchers and an opportunity to network among the hundreds of people in attendance.
Among those who had been laid off, Richard Rogers noticed that a significant number were mature workers, 50 years of age and older. Their needs were different from younger workers.
Rogers learned the room was available after the Career Connections meeting was over. He asked those who fit into the mature worker group to stay. A new group, called 50Plus, would concentrate on the needs of these older workers. Younger workers would not be turned away, but the needs of the 50+ group would be the focus.
In the beginning, about 130 people attended the 50Plus meeting. Rogers decided that whatever the group did for the laid off workers would be without cost to them, an idea the organization strives to maintain today.
A variety of smaller group forums were established. Some focused on keeping current or improving skills in specific fields. Others focused on survival skills for the unemployed.
In a few months, the 50Plus Job Club moved its weekly meetings to Restoration Covenant Church in Round Rock. A free luncheon was started to encourage networking.
In 2011, the Board of Directors voted to form a non-profit corporation, HIREDTexas, a Federally recognized 501(c)(3) charity. Gifts and grants may be tax-deductible for donors who itemize their deductions.
By 2012, the first of several computer software classes began. Returning mature workers had often worked on computers, but their experience had not always extended to the personal computer. These classes remain a key component of HIREDTexas today.
By 2013, HIREDTexas moved its meetings to Grace Presbyterian Church in Round Rock, where the all-volunteer team continues to serve the unemployed and underemployed.
In 2017, HIREDTexas is adding new programs to more effectively help the unemployed at all stages of their careers and at all levels of the corporate world find and land their next job.