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Low unemployment rate in Fort Wayne creates need for more workers

The most recent statistics on the unemployment rate in Fort Wayne show that it is below both the state and national averages.

Posted: Feb 21, 2020 4:50 PM
Updated: Feb 22, 2020 9:47 AM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) -- The most recent statistics on the unemployment rate in Fort Wayne show that it is below both the state and national averages.

“Where we are at right now in the city is we need workers,” said Rick Farrant, Northeast Indiana Works Director of Communications. “There are thousands of jobs out there in Northeast Indiana that are available for people right now. “

The low unemployment rate makes it difficult for Fort Wayne businesses looking to hire new employees.

“Two-thirds of businesses in Allen County anticipate that they will be adding headcount over the next year,” said Ellen Cutter, Greater Fort Wayne Inc. Vice President of Economic Development. “Downtown development plays an important role in that, as do development in investments throughout the community.”

Along with new jobs from the continued downtown development, employee demographics around Northeast Indiana indicate many more jobs will be opening up soon.

“One thing that we are facing in Fort Wayne and in Northeast Indiana that really impacts the job market is that about 25% of all workers that exist right now are at or near retirement age,” Farrant said. “That percentage is rising at about one point per year.”

The city hopes that progress throughout the community will attract employees to meet the growing need for the workforce in Fort Wayne.

“We feel that the investments made throughout the community rural, suburban, and urban are coming together for a very successful economic development strategy that is successfully attracting and retaining the talent that our businesses need,” Cutter said.

Fort Wayne businesses currently hiring have approached the issue in a number of ways.

“The biggest thing that we rely on is our team members and getting their friends to come in here,” said Roger Norton, The Tube Car Wash Assistant Manager. “We have great people who work here, and we really try to hire the best. More often than not the people they know also come to work with a similar work ethic.”

For The Tube Car Wash, finding new employees means taking to social media and posting openings on job recruitment sites.

Norton says that one factor outweighs the rest in searching for a new hire.

“They are ready to work,” Norton said. “Not only that but they have the desire to learn, and keep learning which is important to us.”

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