Certain industries in Oregon are struggling to hire skilled workers, despite the fact that Oregon’s unemployment levels remain one of the highest in the country at 9.1%, with 180,000 Oregonians out of work.
Even when considering highly educated workers, employers have difficulty finding candidates with the specific training needed for the job. In fact most businesses prefer to pass on the right skills to new employees via internal training, which often takes a financial toll on small businesses, adding to the problem.
Some small business say Oregon needs more programs that help link jobseekers to the appropriate employers. At the other extreme, some states have set up programs that pay for the training at private companies — a move that can be viewed as controversial in the tax payers’ eyes.
Are you a job-seeker that hasn’t found work due to lack of skills or an employer that can’t find workers with enough skills? What would help your situation? Do you think the state should be helping businesses save on their training costs?
- Agnes Balassa: Workforce Policy Advisor for Governor Kitzhaber
- Janice Chandler: Human Resources Manager at MEC Northwest
- Motoko Rich: Economic Reporter NY Times