Ad Council Collaborates With Apple, IBM, the White House to Launch Workforce Readiness Campaign

By Ad Council InSites Archives
Cover image for  article: Ad Council Collaborates With Apple, IBM, the White House to Launch Workforce Readiness Campaign

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented action. So, the Ad Council has launched Find Something New, a national campaign it created in collaboration with Apple, IBM, and the White House to encourage unemployed Americans to pursue education and training that could lead them to a new job, potentially in a new industry. The nonprofit also had the support of more than 200 public, private, and nonprofit members of Business Roundtable, as well as the White House's American Workforce Policy Advisory Board (AWPAB).

Nearly 18 million Americans are currently furloughed, laid off, or otherwise unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of those positions have been permanently eliminated. With that in mind, the new campaign aims to help workers develop new skills for the rapidly changing job market.

"The job market has been shaken in ways none of us have ever seen. Many Americans need a new way forward, and developing their career skills can expand their opportunities," said Lisa Sherman, president and CEO of the Ad Council. "Our Find Something Newcampaign, backed by an extraordinary coalition of supporters, will empower people all across the country to find the education and training path that's right for them."

The campaign encourages Americans of all ages, experiences, and backgrounds to "find something new" at The site offers resources for U.S. students and adult learners alike to identify and pursue the right path for their career goals, as well as explore a wide range of education and training options, including online and virtual learning, professional certification programs, associate degrees, and vocational, technical, and trades education. also features an interactive tool that recommends education options, provides information about careers to consider (including rising careers in growing industries), and presents a directory of resources for supporting services such as childcare, food assistance, and Internet access.

"Now more than ever, we need to ensure that everyone has the tools they need to succeed and seize new opportunities. To invest in our future, we have to invest in people, in education and the many paths to a well-paying job or starting a new business," said Apple CEO Tim Cook. "This initiative is about empowering people across the nation to discover a more hopeful future for themselves and their families."

The Find Something New campaign ad, filmed remotely to accommodate social distancing, features real-life stories of people who embraced new ways of learning that led them to a rewarding career as a result. The ads — created pro bono by EightBar, a collective of WPP talent dedicated to IBM — will appear in donated time and space across all platforms, including TV, digital, print and out of home. Acxiom, Cox Communications, The CW Network, Facebook, Fox Corporation, NBCUniversal, and Snap Inc. are among the organizations that have committed substantial support. Additionally, Omnicom media agency OMD is donating media strategy and outreach for the national campaign.

"IBM is proud to support the Find Something New campaign as part of our commitment to ensuring that the Digital Era is inclusive and one in which Americans from all socioeconomic backgrounds can participate in the modern economy," said Ginni Rometty, IBM Executive Chairman and co-chair of the AWPAB working group responsible for this campaign. "Find Something New will help more Americans discover new pathways to skills training and new-collar careers, which is essential as our country and economy recover from the COVID-19 pandemic."

The AWPAB and Business Roundtable are encouraging members, as well as other private companies, policymakers, and nonprofit organizations to amplify the campaign and commit to training and hiring workers with these valuable skills. So far, through the White House's Pledge to America's Workers, more than 440 corporations and trade associations have committed to providing about 16 million training opportunities for American workers over the next five years.

"At a time of uncertainty, business leaders are focused on supporting multiple education pathways that will provide more assurances of economic mobility for Americans," said Joshua Bolten, president and CEO of Business Roundtable. "Our CEOs are all-in on this campaign because they firmly believe multiple pathways to a career will expand economic opportunity for more Americans and increase the shared goal of a more diverse workforce."

Twenty organizations committed to promoting workforce readiness for Americans provided funding for the campaign:

  • Apple
  • AT&T Inc.
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of America
  • Business Roundtable
  • Cisco Systems, Inc.
  • Duke Energy Corporation
  • General Motors Company
  • The Home Depot
  • IBM
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • JP Morgan Chase & Co.
  • Lockheed Martin
  • National Association of Manufacturers
  • SAP America
  • SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management)
  • United Technologies Corporation
  • U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation
  • Visa
  • Walmart
  • Western Governors University

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