In November of 2017, JFF's Center for Apprenticeship and Work Based Learning recognized Aon for their Business Leadership in Advancing Apprenticeship at our Washington, D.C. Celebrate Apprenticeship event. Aon, a major global financial services firm in Chicago, was recognized as a proven leader in advancing Registered Apprenticeship—not only through the finance and insurance industry, but also in their Chicago communities. Aon continues to justify JFF's recognition. In the accompanying video, you'll see how Aon and Accenture have joined to together to promote apprenticeships with employers throughout the Chicagoland region as a best bet strategy for accessing new pipelines of local talent in their community.
In March of 2016, Aon CEO Greg Case brought together 16 industry CEOs together for a first of its kind meeting to encourage Registered Apprenticeship strategies in the insurance and financial services industry to forge new ground between education and employment via apprenticeship programs. Since then, they have established The Aon Apprenticeship Program—an innovative and proven model that demonstrates that apprenticeships are not only relevant, but can help create a more diverse, high-skilled, and motivated workforce in the areas of our economy that are growing most quickly—professional services and technology.
Accenture, another early leader in adapting the apprenticeship model in Chicago, is building upon the company’s success with apprenticeship as a lead partner in the City of Chicago’s College to Careers Initiative with the ultimate goal to help the students from throughout the region secure education, training, and full-time employment with Accenture.
More recently, Aon and Accenture have joined together to launch the Chicago Apprentice Network, which bring employers together to engage on apprenticeship, linking community college students, workforce- and education-oriented nonprofits, and employers to advance apprenticeship models. That network helps community college students, workforce- and education-oriented nonprofits, and employers develop and maintain ties with one another to advance apprenticeship models. This collaboration is expanding apprenticeship programs, creating key talent pools and offering new opportunities in insurance and financial services and other industries for Chicago area students.
If apprenticeship is to expand and grow as a more mainstream workforce and talent solution, companies like Aon and Accenture will need to step up and take the lead in developing the next generation of talent—from the communities in which they do business. As apprenticeship continues to grow in the US, more companies from financial and business services, healthcare and IT are joining the building trades, manufacturing and construction in the modern-day US apprenticeship system. Our Center for Apprenticeship and Work Based Leaning is proud to support this movement to help employers, states, local areas, and other stakeholders expand and grow apprenticeships throughout the US. And companies like Aon and Accenture are not only leading the way in communities, they are encouraging companies to join this new movement on apprenticeship—for an old way of preparing our future workforce.