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Where are all the Workers?

Date posted - March 27, 2013

With unemployment hovering around 7.7% nationally where are all these unemployed workers when jobs open up.  In northwest Iowa there are jobs available some of which include signing bonus but very few qualified workers.  Darn drug tests.

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35 Responses to “Where are all the Workers?”

  1. Murray says:

    A relative was visiting recently from Michigan and was shocked at all the help wanted ads in our local paper. Good jobs too. If someone is willing to relocate, they could easily be employed here.

  2. Greg's Other Brother says:

    Let’s see… get paid to work 8-10 hours a day OR get paid to wake up at 10 am and wait for the mailman to deliver my weekly check. There is no incentive for the unemployed to get back to work. More available jobs than available workers. Unfortunately, the 7.7% number includes those not really wanting to work.

  3. Hank Rearden says:

    The key word is “Qualified”, and the wages are usually low enough that those on unemployment and other government programs have no incentive to actually find a job. I also would not be blaming drug tests, but the lack of math and critical thinking skills along with a poor work ethic. If you have ever had the oppourtunity to weed through a pile of applications looking for a qualified candidate you would know what I mean.

    I would also like to add that some manufacturing employers have a reputation for treating their employees poorly and as such the employees stay on the job only until better opportunities arise in other counties. I see help wanted ads for these manufacturers every day, 365 days a year, and have had many conversations with their former employees about how they hated the work environment and could not wait to leave.

    • MrRight says:

      We need another type of big manufacturing in town to add some variety and competitive wages that will force said company to treat their employees better or lose all quality help until their profits suffer…

      • Hank Rearden says:

        Kind of hard to do when “Mr. Potter” seems to want it to stay “Pottersville” and keep the competition out.

  4. Biker says:

    I agree with work environment. Spoke with one guy last night. Works ………… at a business place. Wants to get out bad. Also finding someone of quality is awful. Sure not everyone meets every criteria but you can train or be trained. As an employer I have been lucky in keeping the few people I have. Treat them well but they or you need to understand as a business owner I have a lot riding on producing a decent product, ton of competition and to keep paying you a decent wage. What I don’t like is the attitude that gee you drive two $50k vehicles, you have a nice house, etc. I know this is a bigger issue but I don’t believe as an owner I need to pay more taxes, health care etc but that’s our government for you. The amount of applications I receive in a year is a lot. No offense but I wonder where these people come from? Arrested, been in jail, you name it. I thank them for their time but no where close to being qualified future employee.

  5. another employee says:

    All I can say is WOW!!! Sure there is work to be done, but there isn’t anyone that’s willing to work. It’s kind of a Catch 22, because people want the work done, but they don’t want to pay to have it done or they can’t compete with other places that can. The POOR immigrant worker that can’t seem to get a break, well let’s just give it to them. I totally understand that they are not going pay the taxes that WE do, but maybe that’s the drawback that I’m willing to live with to have people that actually show up for work and aren’t expecting everything to fall into their laps. That’s fine and dandy because from my experiences, those are the people that I would rather work around, not only because they will show up for work, but they actually do want to work. Of course, there are the ones that are just lazy, just like any other race, color or creed. I’m just saying that if you complain about what you are getting for workers, then maybe, just maybe you should think about raising your pay. I get a kick out of the youngsters that are just getting out of school or college and they expect, and in some cases(most cases) demand respect and a descent job. Ok, maybe they should climb that big corporate ladder and where that starts at is the bottom. Just because Mommy and Daddy are well to do, doesn’t mean that that earns YOU respect. Or just because YOU are one of the Presidents’ chosen ones (the illegal immigrants) don’t you think that you should earn your stripes before you go strutting around like a king rooster? Don’t go flashing your paycheck to somebody(like me and many other TRUE Americans)and then laugh because you get to bring home more than me…THAT PISSES ME OFF, almost as much as the school in California that took the American flag down and put up the Mexican flag. And that doesn’t piss me off as much as the professor that made the class of college students write the name JESUS on a sheet of paper and put it on the floor and stomp on it!!! One kid didn’t and he got suspended for not complying!!! Now that pisses me off, and they say our society is in check?? I think not. It’s scary!!!

    • ProgressiveThinker says:

      The accessibility to information, knowledge, etc. through technology has changed the ballgame. Anymore, it shouldn’t be about seniority in the work place. Let the best qualified person do the job. I am sick and tired of the Baby Boomers who think just because they have been at a job the longest means that they are the most qualified… Sure, they have experience, that is evident through the amount of hours they’ve clocked in, however, that does not mean they are the most effective at their job.

      It shouldn’t be about seniority anymore, it should be about collaboration and teamwork. If I have a certain skill set that I bring to the table, well then I better be using it to my full potential at my job. If not, then I need to look elsewhere.

      Workers are encouraged by being treated like they matter to the success of the business (whether you are new worker or a veteran of 30+ years), are compensated fairly depending on the amount of quality contributions they can bring to the business, and giving everyone meaningful work that allows them to make a difference for their business and maybe even the world…

      Granted, this model may not work everywhere, but it is a good foundation to work off of and would serve 21st century businesses well if they took this approach. My generation (Millennials) doesn’t care to make six figures right away. Rather, they want to be given credit for what they do bring to the table and they want to be a part of the larger picture instead of being placed in the “bottom rung of the corporate ladder” to put in the time to be considered relevant…

  6. jcs says:

    When my father got out of the miltary after WW11 he said many veterans were thankful
    to get a job,period. They worked hard, provided for their young families, saved what they could and were proud of their country. Does this hold true today?

  7. Mark says:

    how about a perspective from a 48 year old white male that can’t get a good job around er. Why? I really don’t know. I apply for jobs I am almost over qualified for and yet I don’t get interviews. you want my opinion? Blame the Human Resources departments of every employer out there. They dig and nitpick over every little detail looking a super squeaky clean experienced employee to fill their position. What about the older guy who needs the job to get the bills paid? The older guy who’s been in the work force for 20 plus years and brings a wealth of experience that a 20 year wouldn’t have. Nope, employers want younger employee with fancy degrees and stuff. I think employers need to ease up on the requirements and take a closer look at ALL applicants EQUALLY. Qualified workers are out there, but we’re considered too old.

    • Aaron says:

      I agree with you to a certain extent only because my dad is in that situation too. He has applied for several jobs that he has plenty of experience at and they don’t even give him an interview. I believe that it is good to get younger employees though. Especially ones who have spent the time and money to get a degree in the field that they are applying for, after all that is what the ultimate goal of going to college is for. I (being younger) am actually tired of the older generation being in the way of change. We have great ideas as young and fresh workers, but meet a lot of resistance because “We have done it this way for so long and it has worked so why change it?” Well, my response is that in order to be competitive we have to change with the times. The technology is growing and making a lot of things easier and the younger generation is more apt to integrate and “show off” this technology than the older generation. If the older generation would listen and give the younger generation a chance to prove themselves right or wrong then I think more respect would be given from the younger generation.

  8. peter lemonjello says:

    With Obama’s creative unemployment math it’s around 8%, when in reality the actual national unemployment rate is closer to 18%. That being said, anyone who can’t find work isn’t looking hard enough.

    • Aaron says:

      Not necessarily looking hard enough, but don’t want to do what is posted in the papers. People want to make more money but not work as much. That is one of the contributing factors to the high price on everything and is why going over seas with manufacturing is so appealing to companies. They are willing to work for nothing and they don’t complain about it. If people did less complaining about there job and just embraced that they had a job and are making money and take what they get paid as a gift then things might actually start to turn around, but I really don’t see that happening.

  9. Tim says:

    Ya’all should be ashamed of yourself. Picking on the poor and unfortunate that don’t want to work. My goodness, it is the NEW American way ya know. How dare ya’all critisize people that know just how to work the system, after all, that takes some knowledge and determination! And after a few years of doing it, it becomes second nature. Who told us we HAD to work for something? We voted just like everyone else. We need health care just like ya’all. Thank you Mr President. Have you seen all them ad’s for work? It is so confusing to apply at all them. We have a PO box, and my goodness, the gov’t knows we just need that help, darn, still two days before that check gets here. Be nice to us. Someday we may need to teach you how to get that handout. Do you know how hard it is to buy those cigarets with our foodstamps? My goodness that is a job in itself, need to ‘launder’ that thru some other channel. Oh wait, I think they are getting ready to introduce another new handout program. I better go listen to M—C, it is coming on.

  10. Lee Ann says:

    In NW Iowa right now has an unemployment of 2.3%. Meaning everybody that wants a job, can probably find one. Its not going to make a lot of money,but its a job.

  11. Ashshade says:

    One thing, you don’t want to employ the bottom 5 – 10% of the work force. Some people are just unemployable. Drink, drugs, lazy, crazy, it can get bad.

    Si Habla espanol (sp?) is better than 2 hours late and drunk with a short fuse. But I am glad that chapter of my life is over.

    I have never had much trouble finding work, those that do need to step back and look at what is going on.

    Mark, ask someone to do a mock application / interview. Just to see what someone else thinks. Maybe something will stick out to them that you don’t notice.

    Others, take a job any job. Employers like people to apply that are working. Having a guy that says “After X-company laid off half of the workforce, I took a job at McD’s or something like that because I can’t stand not working”. Sounds so much better than “I got laid off 3 months ago and I’m trying to find a good job”. (And your just now getting to me? I must not be a good job. or What have you been doing for the last 3 months?)

    15 years ago I got fired, and took the first job I could get. I started at minimum wage, but within 1 year I was getting paid near the top of the department and was being groomed for ast. supervisor. I didn’t like the job so I found one that I liked, better work, better pay. That got me into a better job that I kept for 11 years. That job got me into what I am doing now, self employed. I love it.

    A minimum wage job and hard work got me to where I want to be. You got to start somewhere, sometimes twice, or more.

  12. JJSMW says:

    Part-time, minimum wage jobs that offer no insurance benefits,are not gonna be enough to support a family these days.

    • Hank Rearden says:

      But you now have “Obamacare”. Yaaaayyyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!

      • MrRight says:

        Yes, Obamacare. Something that allowed me to stay on my parents’ health insurance when I was looking for work right out of college. I worked three part time jobs (that did not offer health insurance) while living at home and staying insured under my parents’ health insurance. It was quite the deal. It actually made sense that I could still be on their health insurance and be protected.

        I love it. Finally taking a stand against greedy insurance companies who could care less about the consumers as long as they make a buck…

        • Hank Rearden says:

          You forgot to thank me for picking up the tab for your insurance through my higher premiums. You could afford (or your parents could) the tuition for college, but then expect to be covered as an adult under your parents coverage like you are still a little child.

          I think you are the greedy one sucking insurance off the government mandated teet, while the productive class foot the bill.

          • MrRight says:

            You picked up my tab? I think my parents picked up my tab. My parents could not afford the tuition, I had academic scholarships, grants, and student loans. I will be paying off my student loans through the hard-earned money that I make from my now full-time job. (I made it work during the time I was working three part-time jobs; no one paid my way for me, I worked hard to make ends meet… but was THANKFUL for the ability to be insured when I was not covered by my part-time employers.)

            I guess, since my part-time employers didn’t offer health insurance, that I could have just went to the emergency room when I got ill. That would’ve been less damaging to your insurance premiums, no?

            I wasn’t sucking insurance off the government-mandated teet. I was benefitting from a system that allowed me to be covered when I was unable to provide it for myself. I was biding my time until I found full-time employment.

            I can’t even begin to imagine what higher shares of compensation will taken out of my paycheck to pay for Social Security and health care, with less left over to save, meanwhile Hank gets to be fully covered and retired. You should be thanking ME.

          • Lee Ann says:

            Most family policies through the work place have a certain price for one employee, the employee and spouse, or employee and family. Regardless of how many inthe family, its the same price for 3 or 10 in family. So how is it affecting your insurance for this guy to be on his family’s insurance? It doesn’t affect it at all. He is not sucking off your insurance at all.

            You’re paying higher premiums? Hm, why is that? Because most people I know received a check back from their insurance company because their costs were less. You must be in the wrong insurance company.

          • Tim says:

            Lee Ann:
            I need to know the insurance company you have, I know of NOBODY who has had their insurance premium go down, or gotten a check back from the insurance company for premiums going down. You may beleive in Obama Care all you want, it just is not happening.
            Let me tell you how people are “sucking” yes “sucking” off me thru insurance. When someone is not insured, and goes to the Dr. or hospital, and has a bill for $20,000, and doesn’t pay it, who do you think picks up the tab??? If you say the hospital eats it, errrrrrrrrrrr wrong!!! People who pay for their hospital or Dr. visits who have insurance. And therefore, my rates go up. Please Please inform me which insurance company gives money back because the premium has gone down.
            Obama Care is going to make my wife and I buy maternity insurance come this fall. Now, tell me why, why, would we buy that??? I guess if Abraham and Rebecca could do it, we could to. I will be paying for those of you who have the ability to have kids. But omg, Obama Care is sooooo wonderful. It is a totally failed program.

  13. Lee Ann says:

    Tim , I have two relatives that received money back from their insurance company. And as for Obamacare, it hasn’t really even gone into effect yet, until next year. The only parts so far are for adults under 26 on their parents’ insurance, and it is illegal to refuse care to a child who has a pre existing condition. Which one of those do you not like? The more people covered by anybody’s insurance, the less we will have to pay, because we all know how costs go up in hospitals due to the uninsured. So if that 25 year old is covered by his parent’s ins. and he had a car accident, who pays? thankfully right now, he has coverage. How about a child with cancer, they reach their cap of a million dollars and the insurance company used to cut them off. no more benefits for your child. That is a nightmare.

    Obamacare is based on Romney’s Massachusetts care. The only reason Obama put the mandate in was because theRepublicans wanted it a couple of years ago. But all of a sudden, they didn’t want it in there anymore. People in Massachusetts overwhelmingly like their health care insurance. Just wait. You’ll see. It’ll be allright.

    • Tim says:

      You did not give me the name of the insurance company??? or why it went down?? Ok, lets all hope you are right. In the meantime, Lee Ann, please pay the $120 per month increase that takes effect next month on my premium.

      • ProgressiveThinker says:

        Scare tactics and fear-mongering is all that you are spewing, Tim. You are basing your alleged premium increase on what, something Faux News told you?

        I think in the long run you will see that an insurance exchange (online marketplace or whatever it is called) is going to force those insurance companies who have been taking advantage of you (yes, you, Timbo) to play fair when offering insurance to the consumers. A little competition is going to make things much better and get EVERYONE insured which will in turn reduce the premiums for all as those who were taking advantage of the system (using the ER as their clinic) will be insured and not costing the hospital and consequently the consumer ridiculous amounts of money.

        • Tim says:

          Progressive Thinker…(another person with an ‘opinion’ that won’t own it with his/her name)
          As a self employed business owner, I pay my own premium, Not using Fox news or any other source for my premium raise except, the letter the insurance company has sent and the bill. With your “progressive thinking” and Lee Ann telling everyone that rates will go down, I have yet to see the name of the company that is lowering that rate. If your theory is correct why should I pay the higher rate to an employee for his/her insurance when I can pay the gov’t mandated penalty, it is cheaper!! Let me ask you something, to me it sounds like you don’t even pay any insurance. Are you one of those using the system?

        • Tim says:

          I have noticed several patterns coming from this forum. 1st, usually, (not always, but huge majority of the time) if you are anything other than an Obama supporter, you will be attached personally. 2nd, if you are not an Obama supporter you always are told you get ALL your knowledge from a source called Faux news. 3rd, if you are not an Obama supporter, you are a backward thinking, bible thumper, non ‘progressive’ thinker, that really knows nothing what he/she is talking about. 4th no matter what happens in this country, it is and never will be an Obama failed policy, it will always be either Bush/Cheney, or some other persons/officials fault.
          Sort of Like not owning your opinion with your name.

          • Bob says:

            Yeah, you are right, Tim.

            You have your full name and are owning all of your opinions… in reality, I don’t know you from a hole in a the wall. Just like I am “Bob” but you have no idea who I am, even if I put my full name. It doesn’t matter. It is the discussion forum on…

            I don’t think you were attacked personally, but maybe I am missing something?

            Where do you get most of your information? You like to make baseless claims (from what I’ve observed) which does not help support your cause. Maybe if you provided a credible source every once in a while then people would take you seriously.

            You claim Obamacare is a failed policy when it hasn’t even been fully implemented… I would say you are jumping the gun a bit. Your insurance rates might be going up right now, but over time are they going to be consistently higher, especially once more people are in the insurance pool? I don’t think you can answer that as that is all speculative.

            Here is a source of information ( and proof that Obamacare “Rate Shock” is an Ugly Insurance Company Deception. I guess I am not sure what insurance you are using, but maybe you should switch providers…

    • Lee Ann says:

      I don’t usually ask all my relatives what their insurance co. is named I personally am on Sanford Health COBRA. as I go on medicare next October, since I have been considered disabled. Yep, I’m one of the 47% Mittens talked about.

      Tim, right now, the uninsured go to the ER for major illnesses, and yes, our costs go up to cover the uninsured. Which is why the ACA will lower costs, since people that used to be uninsured can now go to their own GP for care. I used to work for a major health care chain, and one of our benefits was prescriptions for cost. I had a major surgery and received 60 percocet at cost and it was $4.99! While I as in the hospital, one pill cost $9.00. So as these people begin to get covered and the lower income people are covered by medicaid at a higher rate, paid by the federal government, our competition between companies will lower rates. But that won’t happen until the registries are ready.

      • Tim says:

        Lee Ann…
        If you truly beleive everyones insurance rates are going lower…..we need to get together,…I need to smoke some of the same wacky tobacco in my pipe that you are smoking….it just ain’t goin to happen!!!

  14. Robert Keller says:

    Companies like the largest employer in Sheldon who will not hire you back after you give two weeks notice and go to another job, such as my case when I went to a better job in 1998 and got laid off from there. I did not get hired back, and just as well as a very loyal employee with 14 years at the same company got laid off and could not get hired back when he tried.

  15. Robert Keller says:

    Thanks Tim. I think the person you speak of wishes the first lady would divorce Mr. Perfect so she can move in and be with her secret soulmate. The current president can fit in perfectly if he decides to take the pay cut when or if he leaves office, with the National Weather Service. They have a record of being wrong most of the time(like Friday night/Saturday 90%/90% rainfall likely forecast)and he would fit right in as he and they have never explained why they were completely wrong and why would they? If you quote MSLSD, The New York Slimes, or the Washington Compost as your source, then you are legitimate.

  16. JCS says:

    Another prime example of a post not staying on the subject matter. Since people decided
    to talk about health insurance and Obamacare, wouldn’t it be great to revisit this post
    a year after Obamacare takes effect? I wonder if the editors of this site are willing and able to do that.
    I’m glad the pothole issue finally got put to rest.

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