IRC Atlanta’s Economic Empowerment Department supports refugees and immigrants in securing entry-level employment, developing career pathways, learning basic financial management skills, and starting small businesses. The Business Counselor supports the Microenterprise Development Program (MED), which provides refugees currently in business or seeking to start businesses with opportunities for business training, one-on-one business technical assistance, and loans. The Business Counselor is primarily responsible for recruitment of program participants and direct service provision.
Responsibilities may include, but are not limited to:
· Conduct outreach to and recruitment of program participants; screen and assess interested participants for program eligibility and participation
· Assist entrepreneurs to become ready for business financing through preparation of loan applications, business plans, and financial statements
· Underwrite and package loan applications, and present for review to the IRC’s Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), the Center for Economic Opportunity
· Prepare mainstream business loan package applications and connect business owners to local, state, and federal small business supports
· Conduct individual case management and provide one-on-one business counseling and management to new and existing businesses in all areas of business start-up and expansion
· Proactively facilitate referrals to outside service providers as necessary to meet the diverse needs of program participants
· Link participants to in-house Financial Capabilities services and assist clients as they navigate credit builder loans, business loans, and other business funds
· Ensure that information required for program eligibility and reporting purposes is collected and that accurate records are maintained, including case files and client data entry across multiple data bases
· Ensure necessary steps are taken to obtain relevant data in a timely fashion; follow-up with all clients regularly and record all contacts with case notes
· Attend regularly scheduled meetings with other IRC staff and volunteers as part of the review, evaluation, and program maintenance process
· Assist in the planning and coordination of training activities and special events
· Other duties as assigned
Key Working Relationships:
Position Reports to: Economic Empowerment Programs Manager
Position directly supervises: N/A
Indirect Reporting: N/A Other Internal and/or external contacts:
Internal: The Business Counselor works closely with the IRC Atlanta’s Economic Empowerment, Resettlement, and Education & Learning teams to plan and deliver programming.
**External****: The Business Counselor works closely with other refugee serving agencies, business development organizations, and IRC’s Center for Economic Opportunity partners to facilitate successful training and access to capital for entrepreneurs.
· Undergraduate degree. Business experience in lieu of formal business education is acceptable
· Demonstrated understanding of U.S. business climate and systems, business development, with experience in business counseling strongly desirable
· Experience supporting entrepreneurs and new businesses from inception
· The ability to troubleshoot and resolve business issues to promote opportunities
· Knowledge and experience with an array of business topics, including marketing, management, financing, and entrepreneurship
· Ability to work independently, be a self-starter and maintain responsibility for multiple tasks
· Fluency in written and spoken English, with bilingual ability in any refugee language preferred
· Ability to communicate with limited-English speakers.
· Demonstrated multi-cultural experience.
· Familiarity with business software and technologies, especially low-cost online marketing strategies
· Excellent organizational skills
· Strong written and verbal communication skills, including ability to make presentations
· Ability to work as part of a team
· Valid driver’s license, access to reliable vehicle with current insurance, and the ability to travel regularly throughout the service delivery area
Working Environment: The Business Counselor is based in the IRC Atlanta office, which is a standard office work environment. Regular local travel within service delivery area.
COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement****: In accordance with IRC’s duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards and our commitment to safeguard the health of our employees, clients, and communities, IRC requires candidates who are selected for interview to furnish proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in order to be considered for this position.
Commitment to Diversity and Inclusivity****: IRC is committed to building a diverse organization and a climate of inclusivity. We strongly encourage applications from candidates who can demonstrate that they can contribute to this goal.
Equal Opportunity Employer****: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.