The news keeps saying the recovery is slow and there are plenty of people available.  Why is it we can’t find qualified candidates on so many of our searches? ----- President, (street & area lighting) fixture manufacturer 

Paul:  There are two ways I’ll answer that question. While there may be plenty of people available in some industries, they are often are referred to as ‘unskilled’ labor.  The labor in greatest demand in our industry is what I would characterize as ‘Skilled’ labor, whether we define “skilled” as having a formal education or as possessing specific experience with our industry. Additionally, the news headlines about plenty of people available are usually not referring to our industry, where we experience a very low unemployment rate. Mary Lindenmuth (our Recruiting Director for Engineering, Operations, Manufacturing and Finance) says that, in essence, unlike many other industries, “lighting is at 100% employment.”   Don’t give up, but realize you’re in today’s ‘gold rush’ for top candidates.

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Steve Schwartz