Your Spring employment outlook

MASON CITY, IA – The economy is improving, but there are still many Americans currently searching for a job. 4.3% of Iowans are unemployed while in Minnesota that number is at about 4.5%.

The good news is, with a new season usually comes new opportunities.

“We’re really seeing an all time high as far as job listings and employment being offered in the area,” that’s according to Jennifer Andrade with Iowa Works.

Right now, there are more than 1,200 listings on the Iowa Jobs website and many of those positions do not even require a 4 year degree.

“Over 50% of our job openings in the state are middle skill jobs and we’ll continue to see that grow,” says Andrade.

Middle level jobs are those that require some training, but not necessarily a 4 year degree. They include welders, plumbers, electricians, and nurses and once the frost level goes down, construction companies will not only start digging in the ground, they’ll also start looking for more employees.

“We’re seeing a lot of job openings. I get calls all the time on the phone and I have to tell them I don’t have enough students to fill so that’s a good thing for the industry,” says building trades instructor, Gregg Helmich.

After taking a semester off from engineering school, Matthew Niblack saw the need for construction workers and enrolled in NIACC’s program and already has several job offers.

“I heard about this program and I enjoy working with my hands and with wood and stuff, so it sounded like something I wanted to do so I went ahead and signed up for it and I’m glad I did,” says Niblack.

“The skilled workers that are coming out of training have a good shot at some of these jobs,” added Helmich.

So, the jobs are out there. If you are someone who is having trouble finding employment, Andrade gives some advice.

“Well I think that an important thing to remember is just that you have marketable skills for the jobs that are in demand. Figure out what skills you have to offer a business. It’s not about what your experience was for the last 10 years but what skills you offer,” she says.

If you need help figuring out what skills you have to offer, Andrade recommends making an appointment with Iowa Works or your local employment agency.

Another event job seekers might want to check out is only a week away, the North Iowa Regional Career fair. It is next Wednesday in the NIACC gymnasium from 10:00 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. More than 60 businesses are signed up, and are searching for job applicants.

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