Community
3:38 pm
Tue June 11, 2013

'Imagine Pittsburgh' Offers Employment Opportunities

The Allegheny County Conference on Community Development launched a new website today in an effort to fill 30,000 jobs available in Pittsburgh.

The announcement was made inside PNC Park — capacity 38,362 — about one seat for every available job.

Imagine Pittsburgh” is described as a “virtual concierge” that welcomes visitors and offers information on everything Pittsburgh. The multimedia website provides a searchable database covering all 10 counties of the region and provides information on major industry sectors including manufacturing, energy, financial and business services, health care, life sciences, communication technology, retail, hospitality and profiles of employers across the region.

Bill Flanagan, executive vice president of Corporate Relations, said the website is about strengthening Pittsburgh by creating a solid workforce.

“The idea is to do a better job of spreading the word about opportunity that exists in Pittsburgh,” Flanagan said. “A lot of people across the country and even here in the region don’t understand that there are 30,000 open jobs in the region today, and we feel if we do a better job of publicizing them, letting people know about them, they can find them and companies can find the workers they need.”

Imagine Pittsburgh isn’t just a help wanted website, but it offers a glimpse at life in Pittsburgh. The site features “Neighbors” that guide people through their Pittsburgh experiences. The Imagine Pittsburgh Neighbors are made up of 50-plus mid-career professionals who are Pittsburgh natives, settlers or “boomerangers” who moved and came back to the city.

Bryan Brantley, 34, moved to Pittsburgh in 2001 to attend Duquesne University Law School. Graduating in 2004, Brantley found himself overwhelmed by the economic opportunities in Pittsburgh and began building a law career in a city he never intended to call home.

Brantley said he didn’t think twice about becoming an Imagine Pittsburgh Neighbor.

“We’re coming together,” Brantley said. “It’s a collaborative effort. It’s promoting our city, promoting the things we have going on here, and just generally being a good citizen of our fine city.”

Flanagan said the gap between the youth and the elderly in Allegheny County makes it difficult to find mid-career employees willing to work and live within the city limits.

“We don’t have as many young people as competing regions, so we feel we’ve got to work harder than other places to get out the word to those people and let them know that there is opportunity here in Pittsburgh and it’s a great place to think about advancing your career,” Flanagan said.