Originally from Colombia, Elizabeth Hurtado struggled to secure a job when she first arrived in the United States, almost 10 years ago. Before earning a bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering from the University of North Carolina in Charlotte, she was advised to begin knocking on doors of businesses asking for a job. Following this advice, she secured a job as a waitress.
That experience as a recent Hispanic immigrant seeking a job opportunity sparked an idea. About a year ago, she used her engineering and computer skills to create “Hay Trabajo,” a website that connects businesses with the Hispanic labor force with customizable options for skill matching, qualifications and increasing levels of review for employers.
The service took off within the first month of launching the website. “Every day, my phone was buzzing at work,” Elizabeth said. “Then I noticed that I had over 200 people that had applied for jobs, so it just started growing organically.” After one year, over 800 people have subscribed.
After securing some funding from local grant programs, she realized she needed further assistance in developing her business. Prospera started working with Elizabeth to help her with scalability and marketing, to sign up more businesses looking for bilingual talent and local Hispanic community members looking for job opportunities.
For more information about Hay Trabajo, visit haytrabajoya.com