Lakeshore News Tonight

Northwest Indiana Unemployment: An Update

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The unemployment rate dropped slightly for the state of Indiana from 9-point-3 to 9-point-one-percent between the months of February and March.   Renetta Dubose breaks down the Indiana Workforce Development data and tells us what employment companies in the region see from job seekers and employers….
Renetta Dubose:  Finding work might be easier now that spring is here.  that’s what Staff Source president Dan Kesic typically sees with employers each year.

Dan Kesic: Right after Thanksgiving things slow down. We don’t see a pick-up until March.

Kesic … who runs a staffing and recruitment firm in Hammond … says his company is seeing 30 percent less work from clients compared to last year.  The downturn is reflected in the statewide unemployment rate for March.  A third of Indiana’s 92 counties rank ten percent or higher.  That includes LaPorte and Starke Counties … which rank number five and six at more than 11 percent.  Newton … Lake and Jasper Counties also have high rates for March at 11 and ten percent.  Kesic says the numbers show a decline in blue collar jobs in Lake County again and a little uncertainty in the federal government.

Kesic: Companies are taking steps that are cautious.  Most people don’t know about the healthcare situation and most companies are on hold until that’s figured out.

Express Employment Professionals see a similar struggle in Porter County.  Franchise owner Jean Phelps says some people without jobs become picky about employment.

Jean Phelps: With that unemployment they’re not going to take jobs that are not giving them the type of pay as unemployment, nor will they jeopardize it.

While Porter County is on the lower end of the unemployment spectrum for March … Phelps says eight point seven percent is still relatively high.  She believes the demand for skilled labor is present … but when companies search  … they come up short.  Phelps says as manufacturing jobs grow across the county … students should consider a different education route.

Jean Phelps:  We’re still putting out students with Liberal Arts degrees and they don’t have the background in technology.

Dan Kesic: I feel bad for kids coming out of college…they really need to extend their education.  They will find positions with companies easier.

Kesic expects more jobs this summer.  In Hammond … Renetta Dubose, Lakeshore News.
For a few extra tips during the job hunt,  you can download a career development e-book by visiting www. expresspros. com/getandkeepajob.

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