Second Chance Employer Profile

Honest Jobs

A young woman wearing a safety vest and hardhat smiles at the camera while operating a large machine.

Honest Jobs is a job search site that specializes in connecting job seekers with felonies to second chance employers. It was created by Harley Blakeman, who was arrested for drug dealing in 2010 at the age of 18. Upon release, he earned a bachelor of business administration from The Ohio State University, but when he went to look for a job, his felony got in the way. So he decided to help others like him by creating Honest Jobs.

The company now has 20 employees, most of whom also have had felony convictions. It works with major companies like Koch Industries and Amazon, and many smaller local and regional businesses. Honest Jobs currently lists jobs in all 50 states plus the District of Columbia. In March 2022, it announced a $1.5 million round of seed funding, which will help it expand even further. 

Second chance hiring practices 

What sets Honest Jobs apart is the algorithm it uses. The algorithm reads the descriptions of jobs in the area and seeks to identity any conflict between the job description and the job seeker’s record, letting them know which jobs they have the best chance of getting.

An employer can post unlimited jobs for free. But if they want to sponsor one or more jobs that will  get prominently displayed and will be featured in marketing campaigns, Honest Jobs charges $10 per application. It also offers a fair chance recruiting service, which costs a flat fee or a percentage based on the annual salary of the job seeker. As part of this service, candidates will receive pre- and post-placement support, with referrals to resources such as housing, transportation and other social services. Employers will receive a retention guarantee.

To learn more about Honest Jobs