Unemployment rate down but high demand for workers

Published: Jun. 22, 2021 at 6:39 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - As of Tuesday, Marathon County has the lowest unemployment rate in the region, but there is a high demand for workers.

“If you have a really high employment rate, people are having a really hard time finding jobs,” Regional Economist Mitchell Rupp, said. “If you have a really low unemployment rate, people are having a much easier time finding work.”

The unemployment rate in Marathon County is down 9.1% compared to April 2020. It was at 12.4%. In April 2021, it decreased to 3.3%.

“Sometimes it’s affected by the age of your workers,” Rupp said.

The need for workers is there, but the demand isn’t being met. Some places are taking hiring to the next level. Like the Benedictine Living Community of Wausau.

“Trying to think of something different, something outside the box,” Assistant Director of Nursing Wendy Schumacher said.

The living community held a “fun” job fair Tuesday with the shortage of workers it’s seeing.

“We’re really excited because, with the emergency waivers of the Wisconsin Department of Health, we are able to do CNA training on-site.”

Those waivers allow more people to be hired who weren’t able to before. The living community is offering to pay new hires while they enroll in a month-long CNA class, which is also paid for.

It then offers the person a permanent job after they finish the class.

“It’s like a mentor program,” Schumacher added.

The goal was to recruit eight people for the class. It even offered extra incentives during the fair like a TV raffle and lunch for people who came to apply.

If you are interested in applying to the living community’s job openings, you can find those here.

Wisconsin’s employment report for May 2021 will be released Wednesday at 10 a.m.

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