There’s a huge pool of untapped talent out there. Here’s how to find it–and put it to work.

Regardless if you are the woman who took time off to raise children or care for aging parents or if you are married to the woman (or man) who has, you know that re-entering the workforce after an extended absence can be a daunting task.

” As an industry, we can’t afford to overlook women who have taken time away to raise families, ” says Steven Aldrich, chief product officer at GoDaddy, one of six companies partnering with nonprofit Path Forward to launch re-entry programs. ‘There are thousands of talented women who are more than capable of pursuing fulfilling careers, but have a hard time returning to work because of a resume gap.’ ”

It is worth noting that while returnships “are often billed as a way to recruit women, who are more likely to take time off for personal reasons than men,” they are open to both men and women.

The returnship is an internship-like program for workers who are returning to the workforces after being absent for an extended time. According to Carol Fishman Cohen, CEO of Boston-based career re-entry firm iRelaunch, “The internship-like experience is similar to a contract consulting role, special project, or temp job–any short term, non-binding arrangement…We are hiring a communications specialist as a re-entry intern for three months. If both parties are happy with the arrangement, the person will continue on in a permanent role.”

A cursory online search shows that a good number of companies offer returnships.  This article, as the title states, offers suggestions on how to start such a program.

Whether you are looking for a job or looking to start a program, this is a good nugget of current job market information.

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