BATON ROUGE, Louisiana (WAFB) – The holiday season has arrived, and with it comes the time for stores to hire vacation workers, but this year those seasonal jobs are more like a year-round need.
Like last year when we saw a great need for truck drivers and delivery services to meet the high demand from online shoppers, we still see the same problem in addition to the need for employees to be physically in stores as well. Buyers are opening their wallets about as much as they were before the pandemic. According to the Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC), the demand for the items you buy is expected to increase to where it was in 2019.
“Now the problem is there are a lot of problems in the economy right now in terms of open jobs and supply chain issues,” said Andrew Fitzgerald of BRAC.
As everyone shopped primarily online during the pandemic, the need for truck drivers has skyrocketed. This problem still has not gone away. And it is likely that now that businesses are open again, people will no longer be so patient in waiting for their packages.
“We still have a real need for truck drivers at both local and national level. But one thing is that there are also a lot of retail openings here in the Baton Rouge area, so people are struggling to staff their stores as well, ”Fitzgerald continued.
Right now the biggest problem for Baton Rouge and many places across the country is that there are more jobs available than people looking for jobs.
“We have a lot more job vacancies, around 29,000 or 30,000, in the Baton Rouge area than we have unemployed people, 17,000. This is why these companies are not only struggling to fill their jobs. positions, but they also have to pay their employees more because they compete a lot more for the same talent, ”said Fitzgerald.
“Our labor force participation rate plummeted during the pandemic,” said US Senator John Kennedy, R-Louisiana. “You would expect it, but he didn’t come back. “
Kennedy said part of the problem is that the state continues to provide unemployment benefits to those who can work but choose not to.
“Those who can work should work. All of these social programs that we spend over a trillion dollars a year on were meant to be bridges, not parking lots, ”Kennedy added.
But according to BRAC, the state of the job market may have a silver lining.
“It’s not great if you are a consumer because of all the inflation caused by supply chain issues and the lack of products there. ‘a job, especially if you’re unskilled because those jobs that used to pay $ 9 or $ 10 an hour now pay $ 13 to $ 14 with higher benefits, so it’s good for them. is that whatever they want to buy with new $ 12, $ 13, $ 14 an hour is now proportionately more expensive, ”said Fitzgerald.
To see what jobs are available in your area, you can visit https://www.indeed.com/ or https://www.glassdoor.com/index.htm.
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