Built by national nonprofit Opportunity@Work, Stellarsight aggregates data across more than 250 metro areas to provide first-of-its-kind insight on workers Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs)
WASHINGTON, DC, NOVEMBER 16, 2023 – Businesses, workforce development leaders and policymakers have a new tool to learn about the massive pool of workers who are Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs) rather than a bachelor’s degree, thanks to a free dashboard launched today by the nonprofit social enterprise Opportunity@Work. Known as Stellarsight, the dashboard sheds light on the demographic diversity and geographic distribution of STARs across the U.S., successful pathways for recruiting STARs into more advanced roles, and the impact on the size of the regional talent pool when unnecessary degree requirements are removed. These visualizations provide business leaders and government decision-makers with actionable insights to inform the shift to skills-first hiring and talent management.
“Capital One is proud to support organizations like Opportunity@Work that are leveraging innovative technology like Stellarsight to help to close opportunity gaps in the workforce and in our communities,” said Jessa Thomas, Senior Manager, Community Impact & Investment at Capital One.
The launch of Stellarsight builds upon growing interest in skills-first talent practices from both the public and private sectors. Governors and policymakers across 16 states have taken action to eliminate degree requirements for state jobs – removing structural barriers that prevent skilled workers, including 76 percent of Black adults and 83 percent of Latino adults, from accessing quality jobs in state and local government.
Companies from IBM to Walmart have also announced significant shifts toward hiring and supporting STARs as part of a coalition affiliated with the Tear the Paper Ceiling campaign. The campaign, launched one year ago by Opportunity@Work and the Ad Council, is rallying business leaders from across the country committed to removing unnecessary degree requirements and intentionally recruiting more STARs.
Designed to support these skills-first transitions, Stellarsight aggregates the latest labor market data from more than 250 metro areas in all 50 states, sourced from Lightcast, the U.S. Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the Occupational Information Network (O*Net), to inform inclusive workforce development strategies. Stellarsight utilizes this data to identify skills similarities between jobs and to map the career pathways of STARs across a number of demographics including race, ethnicity, gender, and occupation, at the state, county, metro, and neighborhood level.
“Millions of workers in the U.S. have the skills to succeed in higher-wage roles. But they’ve been locked out of opportunity due to an overreliance on bachelor’s degrees — and their economic prospects have only declined over the past four decades,” said Byron Auguste, CEO & co-founder at Opportunity@Work. “It’s heartening to see more companies and states embrace the potential of STARs to build a stronger and more inclusive labor market. But we can’t realize that potential without data. That’s what Stellarsight is designed to do: provide the insight and information needed to translate our shared vision into the reality of an economy that works for everyone.”
Opportunity@Work is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to rewire the labor market to create economic opportunity for workers skilled through alternative routes (STARS). Opportunity@Work engages with corporate, philanthropic, and workforce partners to directly address the barriers that STARs face, recognize STARs’ talent, and eliminate unnecessary degree requirements for open roles. Their Tear the Paper Ceiling campaign with Ad Council brought together a growing coalition of more than 60 corporate and non-profit partners to share hiring insights and launch a national public services advertising campaign to raise awareness of, and support the hiring of STARs. Learn more at www.opportunityatwork.org.