Monthly Archives: March 2012

Georgia Trend

The Georgia Jobs Outlook

It’s a matter of training, education and timing. Logistics looks promising, but there’s a demand for veterinary technicians and wildlife managers as well.

Putting People To Work: Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler

Putting People To Work: Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler


When Georgia Trend asked workforce development authorities to identify the professions and regions of the state where new jobs are developing and where the jobs of the future might be found, there was a near unanimous response on a number of fronts: The hottest of the hotspots for new jobs is in Southeast Georgia around the ports. And if the experts are to be believed, the demand for future workers will be in fields as varied as cosmetology, welding, plantation wildlife management and trucking. Logistics will continue to dominate the demand for future workers well into the future, with healthcare professionals right behind. The jobs will be there, say the pros, if candidates have the right training and/or education.

Sharon Poitevint stands in a newly built and furnished classroom on the campus of Southwest Georgia Technical College (SGTC) in Thomasville. Nestled in her arms is Juney, a 12-pound Jack Russell Terrier who seems to be fighting back a nap. Juney is a rescued dog, the survivor of a bad traffic accident that occurred eight years ago when the terrier was just a few weeks old. Poitevint is a veterinary technologist (VT) with 26 years of experience in the field, though she now works only one day a week at a local vet’s clinic. The rest of her time is spent teaching in SGTC’s brand new Veterinary Technology Program, a two-year course of study that, when successfully completed, will allow students to test for their Registered Veterinary Technician Certificate.

Then the newly minted VTs can step into waiting jobs, say the technical college faculty members. And how can they be so sure the jobs are waiting? It could have been the news reports that pet ownership across the U.S. is on the rise and has been for years, but it wasn’t. The need for a new VT program began to trickle in a few years ago when Southwest Georgia vets were pleading for some help in their practices. Then SGTC took a survey of the vets in their service area, and “the response was overwhelming,” says Dr. Bo Curles, director of the VT program at Southwest Georgia Tech.

“It showed there was definitely a shortage of trained veterinary technologists. These are jobs that have a starting salary of from $18,000 to $21,000, and that rapidly goes up with experience.” VT classes began this semester with 34 students. The new veterinary program is just one example of how Georgia institutions can help fill the needs of the state’s em-ployers.

Looking At Logistics

Debra Lyons is charged with the task of ensuring that when Georgia employers need workers, they can find them, even if those workers might need special skills outside the norm of average job seekers. Her company’s research has revealed a corridor in Georgia where jobs are growing on the landscape faster than kudzu after a summer rain. “You can look at logistics as just around the Port of Savannah,” says Lyons, vice president of community and economic development at the Atlanta office of ACT, the Iowa testing company that supplies Georgia’s Work Ready program with an assessment program to measure the skills of job seekers against the skills needed for certain jobs. “We also have a superb inland port with the Hartsfield-Jackson [Atlanta International] Airport. Between Hartsfield-Jack-son and the Port of Savannah and everything that runs between those two, across I-16 and up I-75, that is a tremendous [jobs] growth corridor for the logistics industry.”

Read the full article at Georgia Trend.


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Plenty of Old Fashioned Skilled Labor needed

Shared from 11 Alive – Tom Crawley

ATLANTA – Ask almost any company that needs them and they’ll tell you they are hurting for good old fashioned skilled laborers…people who are trained to work with their hands.

Thanks to a growing number of retiring baby boomers and a shrinking population coming along behind them, some estimates predict there could be as many as 16,500 skilled labor jobs opening up in Georgia over the next year.

Many companies, like Atlanta Gas Light and Georgia Power, say they’re already having trouble filling them.

“It’s getting tougher and tougher because kids really haven’t been that interested in going back into the craft skills,” Georgia Power President and CEO Paul Bowers told 11Alive News.

He says there are about 30,000 unfilled skilled labor jobs in the utility industry right now.

Dozens of students from several Georgia high schools took over parts of the State Capitol on Tuesday, showing off the technical skills they’re already learning in masonry, carpentry, plumbing and electrical work.

Their instructors say those skills will one day earn them a good wage, even without a four-year college degree.

“You’re talking anywhere starting out around $25,000 to $28,000,” said Michael Madsen, of the Construction Technology program at West Hall High School.

“By the time you get done with your apprenticeship, after 3, 4 or 5 years, whatever the apprenticeship is, you could be making easy $50,000 to $60,000,” he added.

Madsen says add ten or twenty more thousand a year in possible overtime pay since so many projects lack enough workers.

His students participated in Republican Gov. Nathan Deal’s kickoff of the Go Build Georgia program.

It’s a private-public partnership to encourage more people to consider trade skills they can learn in Georgia’s technical schools and colleges.

But some Democrats, like State Senator Jason Carter (D-DeKalb County), complain that the governor seems to be contradicting himself by cutting back on aid for Georgia’s technical students this year.

“The state needs to put its money where its mouth is,” Carter told 11Alive News.

“We’re spending a day down here celebrating these trades and cutting $18 million out of the HOPE Grant, which helps people go to technical school,” he said.

In response, Gov. Deal’s office said this year’s lower amount for HOPE Grants is partly because higher grade point requirements will mean fewer students can qualify.

The governor’s office also said that after years of surging, technical college enrollment has leveled off this year, requiring fewer grants.

His program is aimed at increasing that enrollment again by encouraging more students to seek skilled labor jobs as a more certain future.

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Apple’s iWallet: The one that will rule the world

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Cash Mobs: Crowdsourcing for Local Economic Development

The Indie Retail Project

It’s not every day that new strategies to support independent businesses take hold so quickly and so well.  That’s why we’re really excited about cash mobs – the latest trend in shopping locally.

Cash mobs essentially bring a “flash mob” of people together to spend money at a local business, often one that is having a hard time making ends meet.  This latest crowdsourcing strategy uses Twitter as well as traditional news media to get the word out.  This Saturday, March 24 has been designated National Cash Mob Day, and a variety of cash mobs are organized in cities across the country.


While cash mobs are raging in small towns across the US, their presence has yet to really be felt strongly in the five boroughs.  However, there is a small, growing presence.  According to a few Twitter feeds, New York saw its…

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Starbucks To Open Plant In Georgia « CBS Atlanta

starbucks logo

ATLANTA (AP/WAOK) – Starbucks is building a new plant in Georgia that will make its Via instant coffee and ingredients for Frappucinos sold both in Starbucks outlets and in grocery stores.

The plant, in Augusta, will employ 140 and open in early 2014. Construction, which will also generate construction and transportation jobs, is slated to start this spring.

The move comes as Starbucks Corp. looks to expand its consumer products offerings found on grocery store shelves, such as ready-to-serve drinks, Starbucks ice-cream and instant coffee.

The announcement came just ahead of the opening of Starbucks’ annual meeting in Seattle.

Starbucks To Open Plant In Georgia « CBS Atlanta.

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The Benefits of Working with a Staffing Firm


Why should you work with a staffing firm?

Staffing and recruiting companies are committed to bringing the right people and the right companies together. Whether you want a temporary, contract, part-time, or permanent position, working with a staffing company is an easy way to improve your job search.

Regardless of the industry or geographic location in which you want to work, there is a staffing company to help. Staffing companies match millions of people to millions of jobs in the U.S. and abroad every day.

How can you work with a staffing firm?

There are three main types of job placements in the staffing industry, according to the American Staffing Association:

  • Temporary or contract: You work for a staffing firm’s customer on an interim basis
  • Temp-to-perm or temp-to-hire: You work for a staffing firm’s customer on a trial basis to determine if the job is a good fit for your skills, interests, and career goals—if so, you become the customer’s employee
  • Direct hire or permanent: You are recruited by the staffing firm and then hired by its customer

Reasons to work with a staffing firm

Staffing companies are not only looking for administrative and short-term manual labor positions but also for executives and professionals searching for full-time employment. Below are a few of the reasons you should work with a staffing company during your next job search. Also, please read the American Staffing Association’s graph of the best reasons  to work with a staffing company.

  1. Get the inside scoop on new openings: Staffing companies work with a variety of companies. Many businesses turn to staffing companies to fill certain positions and never advertise the opening themselves.
  2. Save time: Staffing companies specialize in position types, areas, industries, or even companies. Thus, they know the job market and know the cultures on the companies for which they are recruiting.
  3. Put flexibility and work in the same sentence: If you are looking for time to live life while still making ends meet, working with a staffing company could be the best career move you ever make. Staffing companies place you in part-time or contract work that fits your life.Maybe you want to take a trip to Europe for a month or maybe you need the summers off to watch your kids while school’s out. Either way, a staffing company can help you find a project or company that is right for you.
  4. Work part time and get benefits: When you go on temporary assignments for a staffing company, you are normally employed by the staffing company and could be eligible for vacation, holidays, health insurance, retirement plans, and more.
  5. Free training: Temporary employees get free training from staffing companies to improve their skills and go on more assignments. This is a great way to boost your knowledge and experience before looking for a permanent gig.
  6. Never get bored: As an employee of a staffing company, you get to select the short-term assignments you want to take. You get the opportunity to work in a variety of industries and with different people on numerous projects and tasks. The opportunities are endless.
  7. Go from temp to perm: According to the American Staffing Association, about 75 percent of temporary and contract employees move on to permanent jobs. Thus, a temp job can be a great way to try out a company’s culture.

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