AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF)- While many are enjoying Labor Day off, lots of employers are looking for workers.
According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the majority of states have more job openings now than before the pandemic.
Right now, Georgia has 57 available workers for every 100 jobs, and South Carolina has 55 for every 100 jobs.
That means only 60 percent of able adults in South Carolina are working or actively looking for a job. In Georgia, only about 62 percent.
The labor department is reporting nearly 190,000 jobs were added in the United States in August, about 17,000 more than expected.
A lot of those jobs were in health care, construction, and technology.
Dr. Steven Simmons at Aiken Tech doesn’t believe these shortages will end soon because of the pandemic and retirement rates.
“We were told back in 2020 there was going to be the big meltdown and these individuals were retiring. My personal belief is that the financial crisis of 2008-2009 encouraged those individuals to stay in the work place a lot longer. Now in 2020-2023, they are finally just saying ‘I’m in my late 60’s, early 70’s. It’s time for me to go,'” he explained.
Dr. Simmons tells NewsChannel 6 that after the pandemic, so many got used to working from home and companies may have to blend in-person and virtual where possible to keep employees.
He believes education is the key to filling these jobs.
“What makes it also very challenging is that the jobs that are looking to be filled, you have to have technical skills, technical training. You have to have critical thinking skills. You have to be able to, or have the skill sets to be able to do these jobs,” said Dr. Simmons.
Another possible reason for the labor shortage is low wages and rising costs. People are leaving jobs for higher paying ones.