ATLANTA, Ga - Georgia's unemployment picture is complicated by a mismatch of available jobs and not enough skilled people to fill them.
According to the staffing company Manpower, nearly half of the nation's employers are having difficulty filling critical positions. While there are plenty of people looking for work, the issue is that applicants either don't have the needed skills or experience to fill the positions.
In Georgia, employers are having the most difficulty finding well qualified machinists, industrial mechanics, and welders. They're also struggling to fill jobs in information technology and engineering.
Manpower representatives here in Atlanta say people looking for jobs often are unaware of the training available through the Governor's Office of Workforce Development.
"Very often the funding is there for that training," says Manpower's Kristi Bochniak. "It's yours as a job seeker to use."
There are numerous jobs available to anyone willing to carry a gun and badge.
The Gwinnett County Police Department will hold a job fair on Saturday as they seek to fill 30 vacant slots.
"We're not just looking for ex-military or officers from other jurisdictions," said Corporal Jake Smith. "We're looking for anyone interested in police work as a career."
Saturday's job fair will be held at the Gwinnett County Police Training Center at 854 Winder Highway in Lawrenceville between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Atlanta police will hold a series of job fairs as the department tries to reach a force of 2,000 officers. The job fairs will be held September 8, 17, 24, and 29, at 226 Peachtree Street, SW, on the second floor. Applicants must arrive before 8 a.m.
Looking for manufacturing jobs?
Caterpillar is still planning to hire about 1400 workers over the next five years at its new factory outside of Athens. The new plant's manager said there are currently a limited number of highly specialized jobs posted on their website. Then after the plant is finished early next year, jobs will be posted starting in March and April. 300 jobs will be filled in 2013, with another 300 the following year. In the beginning, they'll be looking for welders, machinists and assembly workers. To follow what's available, go to the caterpillar website here.
Click on "experienced professionals," then "apply now" over on the right. Scroll down to "location," and select "United States," then "Georgia," then "Bogart." The last drop down menu will give you the available types of positions. Click on one, then scroll down to click on "search for jobs."
That will show you what's available at the new plant.