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Impact Hub’s

Workforce Development Accelerator

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The Problem

Austin’s economy is growing rapidly and yet this growth is not shared equitably.  Cost of living has increased 37% from 2010 – 2015. Meanwhile, there are currently over 99,000 families in Austin who are not making a living wage.

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Of the 99,000 families that are not making a living wage, more than 77% are employed.

This is the “working poor.”

It is unconscionable that a city with 37% growth in gross metropolitan product would have this level of inequity.

We can do better.

The Opportunity

Austin creates more middle skill jobs than any other city in the country but we don’t match the people that live here to the jobs that are available. For the region’s economically disadvantaged residents, our ability to address this gap offers a pathway out of poverty.

The Impact Hub Accelerator is an issue-specific, social impact accelerator program.  We take the biggest challenges facing Austin and rally a cohort of teams to make those challenges history.

If you are interested in sponsoring and customizing a partnership, email Ashley Phillips,

“69% of HR executives say their inability to attract and retain middle-skills talent frequently affects their firm’s performance.”

— Bridge the Gap; A report of Harvard Business School & Accenture

We Need Your Solutions

When we think about developing our workforce for the future, we know that tech is critical, automation will disrupt and technologies like artificial intelligence, blockchain and IoT will accelerate innovation and change.  So, tell us…

What are the technologies or programs that:

Bridge the gap between underemployed and gainfully employed?  Connect underrepresented talent pools to available opportunities?  Support employers to attract and retain middle-skill employees?  And more.  If you have a solution, we need it…

Innovation Is Key

We are committed to applying innovation to Austin’s workforce development opportunity and have teamed with leaders from industry, government and nonprofits to examine what the greater opportunities are to make a difference.

We’ve collectively agreed that the greatest impact can be made by applying innovation to the existing 10 year workforce Master plan that identifies 3 industries of significant job growth: Healthcare, IT and Advanced Manufacturing. This is the ideal opportunity for government and entrepreneurs to use their individual strengths for the collective good of our region.

Impact Hub Austin is proud to partner with Workforce Solutions Capital Area bringing innovation to workforce development.

You Should Apply If*…


  • …A desire to change Austin’s workforce gap
  • …Identified a good Problem-Solution fit: your solution can actually have a meaningful impact on the problem
  • …The skills and background necessary to be able to deliver your solution
  • …The ability to measure your impact and track progress against it
  • …A plan for the next twelve months with clear goals and outputs, fully aware that both are probably wrong
  • …Are based in Austin, TX and want to learn from, contribute to and build with a cohort of locally-based peers


  • …Consistent encouragement, inspiration and practical tools.
  • …Dedicated time, mentoring and tailored support as you test and build your impact and business models
  • …Specialist advice from other successful ventures and relevant experts
  • …Powerful connections, including to customers, beneficiaries, potential partners, funders, talent and other locally-based peers like you
  • …Help recruiting, building and engaging your board

What You Get As A Participant*

Impact Hub North and South are open to you.  Our community, our amenities, our coffee and our swings!  We pride ourselves in creating spaces and moments where serendipity is at work and inspiration is constantly at play.

Drawing on the skills and expertise of our team, our network of mentors and your own cohort members, we provide customized coaching and a series of trainings in key skills for venture and impact success.

Impact Hub Austin creates a platform for leading affordability and start-up advisors, mentors and experts in government, business and non-profit top mentors to connect to you and support your growth.  We will identify the challenges you have and connect you to the solutions to you need to succeed, including customers, beneficiaries, potential partners, funders and talent.

We know that people often learn the most from their peers, so we facilitate opportunities for you and your cohort members to share insights, resources, ideas and contacts.

*Huge thanks to the UnLtd USA team for sharing templates, inspiration & best practices as we have built this process and program.

Building On Our Momentum

Armed with the knowledge of Impact Hub’s most recent initiative focused on affordable housing solutions, we are looking to make living in Austin more affordable by improving economically disadvantaged residents access to better economic opportunities. To find out more about our 2017 Affordable Housing Accelerator click here.

 Listen to Mayor Adler speak about the affordable housing issue in Austin and congratulate our Affordable Housing cohort, sponsors and mentors on a job well done.


  • … a seasoned team
  • … a working model for success
  • … an activated mentor and stakeholder network
  • … Impact Hub’s international network of resources

*In 2018, we will focus on workforce development in the Spring and housing in the Fall.

Our Partners & Advisors

Impact Hub Austin is excited to partner on this Accelerator with Capital Area Workforce Solutions, and Assemblewith sponsors JP Morgan ChaseCapital City InnovationBuildFaxDigi.City, and dozens of mentors including leaders from Austin’s for-profit and non-profit sectors.

Our Mentors

Our Partner and Mentor Network span government, business and non-profit professionals who have a wide variety of expertise from land code regulation & tax law to private wealth funding and successful public/private partnerships.  Be sure to come to the launch party to meet this growing community.

The best way to win is to have everyone brings their expertise to the table. Mentors are proven practitioners in Austin specific issues pertaining to housing, government, non-profits and business.  They are here to help our teams overcome major challenges when building their ventures.


The best way to win is to have everyone brings their expertise to the table. Mentors are proven practitioners in Austin specific issues pertaining to housing, government, non-profits and business.

Our Values


Our intention is to create a safe place where you can drop the masks or “roles” you may assume in your everyday life and just show up as you.  In a society where we are often categorized by our accolades and accomplishments, we put our humanity first, before career accomplishments, political position, or the size of bank accounts. To build the trust needed to change the issues we face, we have to start with authenticity.


Ultimately, all of our programs at Impact Hub Austin are created for people to grow.  The Affordable Housing Accelerator is no different.  We are learners and doers and create a space to support both.  We value feedback and see it as a gift and material for our growth.


We invite you to be be bold, to take risks!  To pay attention when your inner critic is stopping you from sharing your ideas or shining brightly.  We invite you to drop the internal judge and be aware of your judgements of others.  Our intention is to create a safe experience where you are able to explore what you’re made of and to stop putting limits on yourself or others.  From here we can walk the path less traveled while honoring the past and pioneering new solutions.


Before we jump to conclusions or judgments we ask questions.  We assume goodwill in our partners and potential collaborators and that each person in this experience is working toward the same end.  We trust each other to do what we say we will do. We may have different approaches, but we share an underlying positive intention and set of values.


We remember the goal, we remember the individuals and families affected every moment in Austin when they aren’t able to find a home.  Our goal is to tangibly change this reality now and ultimately change the narrative of Austin.  We know that this impact will only be sustained through a robust and thoughtful process.  The process ensures the outcome.  And the process is where all the learning happens!


Collaboration is the key to solving the issues of our time. We welcome diversity and partner with like-minded organizations to make a meaningful difference. We understand these issues are extremely complex and any effort to address them must be inherently collaborative.