God forbid you might be an employer right now, trying to hire worker bees who might actually show up to an interview, better…get hired and stay for a while. Can we say that Salt Lake City is in a crisis mode and we’re teetering on a really big problem this next decade? Examples I’ve heard of recently: 1) a company here just opening at a local mall needs 160 employees. They’ve been able to recruit 60; 2) landscapers are paying illegals $15 an hour for manual labor. That’s the going rate for those folks hanging around the entrances to the parking lots of Home Depot. Friend of mine tells me he can’t hire any of them for less than that amount; 3) restauranteur buddy puts ads out, gets no calls. Offering starting wages in the kitchen $12.50-$15 per hour; 4) a manager at UPS tells me he hired one worker who after two days of delivering boxes and packages walked off the job and left the keys in the brown van, with the motor running; 5) a small business owner I know says that when they do place and ad, hires a new employee, that employee doesn’t show up ever again and won’t return calls; and finally 6) another friend tells me that restaurant managers are cannibalizing their neighbors restaurants and offering competitors employees “$1.00-$2.00 more an hour if you come and work for us!”. If you can’t find people to work for you, then you might have to do their jobs, right? So many of my friends who own small businesses are tearing out their hair doing their management jobs and the work of their employees-some doing 15 hours a day. There’s no quality of life when you’re working that many hours. And if you’re over worked, you’re not going out to restaurants, enjoying movies and local entertainment, buying new cars or houses. YOU HAVE NO TIME. This is scary. And to back that up the U.S. Chamber of Commerce just validated in their recent job report is that Utah has only two workers for every three jobs. Do you wonder why Governor Gary Herbert wrote Donald Trump and simply said, “Send UTAH your refugees!” The U.S.C.C. reported that as of June 2019 there were 81,333 available jobs per month with only 57,071 workers to fill those jobs. The state’s ‘Worker Availability Ratio’ (available workers per open position) was the 5th lowest in the nation during that period (North Dakota topped the list with the least number of workers per position at 0.51). The report added that Utah’s job market is over 80% tighter that it was a decade ago. The U.S.C.C. says that they are ‘Working to close both the skills gap and the people gap in the American workforce in numerous ways including education and talent development programs, immigration and labor policy research and advocacy. Homeland Security reported that 1,096,611 people obtained lawful permanent resident stats in 2018 for the entire country. If we divvied up those people to fifty states that’s @22,000 per state. That would still be half of what we need.
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