Expanding Employment and Opportunity in Baltimore

A new virtual call center—inspired by a similar model in Detroit—is creating jobs and helping employees start their career journeys with JPMorgan Chase.

January 23, 2024

When Salleia Johnson first heard about an open role with the JPMorgan Chase virtual call center in Baltimore, she realized that it could be the first step in a potential career.

“When you think of banking, you think of a branch,” she said. “But it’s so much bigger than that. There are a lot of different avenues within the firm.”

Virtual call center employees work with customers over the phone and help them manage their financial accounts. The full-time, home-based roles provide access to a steady income with opportunities for career growth, financial wellness and tuition assistance.

The Detroit Blueprint

The new virtual call center, which opened Oct. 20, is part of a broader initiative to expand business investments and help create jobs in communities that are often overlooked.

Baltimore’s call center is inspired by the model that JPMorgan Chase launched in Detroit in 2022. Now in its second year, the Detroit call center has hired more than 100 employees, and its success has helped the company develop a playbook to scale the model.

“We wanted to expand the availability of careers to communities where we know that the talent exists but the opportunities can be limited,” said Jordan King, Executive Director of Virtual Operations at JPMorgan Chase. “Our call center positions can be gateways to other opportunities at the firm. We’ve had people go on to become tellers or take on leadership roles.”

Bringing the Model to Baltimore

Baltimore was a natural fit for JPMorgan Chase’s second virtual call center. In 2022, the company announced a $20 million five-year commitment to benefit underserved Baltimore communities—part of a broader investment in the Greater Washington region.

Also key was the Baltimore Mayor’s Office of Employment Development (MOED), which facilitated the hiring of more than 40 Baltimore-based customer service specialists and leaders. The Baltimore cohort is only the beginning as the firm plans to grow the team with help from MOED and other local organizations.

Although the work is remote, the call center team will meet regularly at the Parks & People Foundation and the Chase Mondawmin Community Branch for training and face-to-face meetings.

A Personal Connection

Heather Blake, who oversees the Baltimore team, is excited about JPMorgan Chase’s growing presence in Baltimore.

“Being part of a project that has the ability to have an impact to the community I grew up in is very personal,” she said. “There’s a huge population of people who have the potential to have a great trajectory with the firm. If we didn’t have a presence here, they would not have the opportunity to work at one of the best financial institutions in the world.”