Department of Labor looks to curb workforce shortage

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SCOTTS BLUFF COUNTY, Neb. - (KNEP) - The Scotts Bluff County Labor Department looks to help businesses facing workforce shortages.

Scotts Bluff County faces a workforce shortage (Source NBC)

The unemployment rate in Scotts Bluff County is 3.7% which is higher than the state and the Panhandle overall. Patricia Comfort, regional manager for the department of labor, states there is a disconnect between those looking for work and those looking for employees.

Those looking for work aren’t necessarily looking for the kind of jobs the area has. Medical, transportation and to some extent manufacturing continue to have openings in the area.

Comfort adds the area and her department needs to see what is available to make the workforce work for them. She states they work with businesses to ensure they are providing a competitive wage and benefits package. They also ensure the job description on the application is exactly what the company is looking for at the time.

It may also be easier to hire within for a more skilled position which would make it easier for a company to higher for the lesser skilled job. Comfort notes businesses may need to invest in the candidate with training and remain unbiased towards them.

In recent years, Comfort noted that anecdotally they have been working with more older people to try to help them land a job.

Overall, Comfort and the labor department hopes to encourage future workers and businesses to work together and find a common ground. She adds it’s hard to get people out here without a big salary.