P33 plans a digital marketing campaign, “Come Back to Move Forward,” to target the 100,000 tech professionals it says have Chicago connections. The campaign will focus on San Francisco, New York, Seattle, Los Angeles, Boston, Atlanta, Denver, Austin, Dallas and Washington, D.C. It’s aimed at mid-career tech workers with the most in-demand tech skills, including data, software, cloud, artificial intelligence and engineering.
About 50 Chicago companies have signed on as partners, ranging from younger software makers such as Ocient, Narrative Science, Amount and FourKites to stalwarts such as Allstate, Caterpillar, CDW and Motorola Solutions.
P33 estimates about half the computer-science undergraduates in Illinois leave the state, which is consistent with previous data from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Companies here often have been successful in recruiting people who left by playing up their family ties and a lower cost of living. But the timing seems right for a bigger push. The pandemic caused tech companies, like many others, to adopt remote-work policies that have loosened geographic constraints and that seem likely to survive COVID-19. United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby has been saying lately “there are going to be a lot of people in places like San Francisco I suspect who will replace their two-hour daily commute with a monthly two-hour commute by aircraft.”