November 3, 2017

Webinar Recording: How to move past the pipeline problem to reach your diversity goals

Stream recording from Tuesday, November 14, 2017 webinar

HR professionals are in agreement: we are in an incredibly tight talent market. In fact, a recent survey by Talent Tech Labs confirmed the number one concern for Talent Acquisition Leaders is the pervasive skills shortage—among professionals who work for companies that hire more than 1,000 people per year, 69% ranked the skills shortage as their #1 challenge. The percentage increases in larger companies. Among professionals who work for companies that hire more than 2,500 people per year, 80% cite the skills shortage as their number one hiring challenge.

You say skills shortage, we say overlooked and untapped talent pool

There is some data that backs up that employers are facing a skills shortage in prospective hires, but there’s also a hugely overlooked opportunity.

In this webinar, Elizabeth Ames from and Laura Mather from Talent Sonar discussed research that indicates companies continually hire from a traditional talent pool that is only 35% of the US population, when they should be looking at a much broader swath of the population. There is a qualified, untapped talent pool of women, underrepresented minorities, LGBT, veterans, etc. that comprises more than 65% of the US.

In addition to what researchers understand about the untapped talent pool, Elizabeth and Laura shared why they are so optimistic that now is the moment that we move past the pipeline problem. They also discussed what companies could do to start tapping those underrepresented pools as well as a real life success story of ThoughtWorks’s people team as told by their own Michelle Reidy, First Year Experience Lead.

Participants left the webinar with these proven tactics organizations have adopted to: 

  1. Improve job descriptions to attract 30% larger talent pool
  2. Review incoming applicants in an identity-blind, side-by-side objective and quantitative comparison
  3. Perform structured interviews which are shown to be 2x more effective than unstructured interviews
  4. Put values at the center of the hiring process


About the Speakers

Elizabeth Ames is SVP of Programs, Marketing and Alliances at, the institute envisioning a future where the people who imagine and build technology mirror the people and societies for whom they build it. AnitaB connects, inspires, and guides women in computing, and organizations that view technology innovation as a strategic imperative. The social enterprise supports women in technical fields, as well as the organizations that employ them and the academic institutions training the next generation. A full roster of programs help women grow, learn, and develop their highest potential.

Prior to Elizabeth’s role at, she held management positions in marketing and strategy at Apple, Verifone, Netcentives, Vontu, Certive, Plastic Logic, and RETHINK Partners, where she was Founder and CEO. Elizabeth received her BFA from the University of Hartford and her MBA from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University.


Laura Mather, Ph.D. is the CEO of Talent Sonar. She is a tech expert who sold her cyber-security company, Silver Tail Systems in 2012 to RSA for hundreds of millions of dollars and was named one of Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs. With Talent Sonar, Laura is using her tech skills to streamline best hiring practices to find the right fit.



Michelle Reidy, Lead of First Year Experience Team at ThoughtWorks, is passionate about all things people! She started her career in consulting focused on helping organization drive process and organizational efficiencies, finding her passions fell mostly in the people development aspects of the job. Within TW, she has focused on new hires –  both one on one, as well as strategic program design – giving them the tools, resources and support to successfully kickoff their careers. Most recently, she has added in support for individual capability development of all consultants for ongoing career growth through their entire tenure with the organization.