Survey Shows Capital Region Employment Bounced Back Some In August
The pandemic has left a sizable mark on work and the workplace, but there are some relatively positive signs in New York’s Capital Region.
While coronavirus forced many businesses to close offices and storefronts, some employees worked from home, some who got furloughed found freelance work (at home) or started their own home-based businesses.
Miriam Dushane is with Alaant Workforce Solutions.
"Early on, employers were like 'Oh I can find people because the unemployment rate's so high.' And then they would go to recruit someone for their organization and they found it extremely challenging. So they learned very quickly that the unemployment numbers, while they might be high, were a little bit deceiving in terms of the talent pool that actually was available in the marketplace."
Dushane pointed to New York state Labor Department numbers showing the Capital Region's August unemployment rate at 8.8 percent, its lowest point in the six months since the start of the pandemic.
"Once June hit and the summer hit, we started to see a steady increase in business into our office, which frankly mirrors the decrease in unemployment numbers for the region as of August. To me what that said was many people who were furloughed did actually go back to work. Companies figured out what was the best way to operate their businesses, how they needed to change their operations or just start servicing their customers, introducing products."
Dushane says most of the jobs that have come back in the state are in what she calls "the middle skilled area."
"Someone with three to seven years of experience in information technology, healthcare. Science-related positions are actually very very hot right now. Lots of people are hiring in those areas. We're also seeing a lot of support positions becoming available again, customer service, those types of things."
Dushane advises people who have lost their jobs in industries hardest hit by the pandemic to learn new skills if they want to get back to work soon.
For employers, Dushane has this message:
"Don't look at the unemployment numbers because they really haven't changed many needs that organizations locally need. And you have to put a pretty good business case out there and reassure your applicants that you are a company that will likely weather the storm and be able to keep things lean if you wanna recruit new people into your organization."
Dushane adds the biggest challenge she's seen across the board with all of the employers that Alaant works with is people who are working aren't likely to make a job change at this time.