Survey: Finding Qualified Workers #1 Challenge For Area Businesses

Statewide Iowa — (RI) — The June survey of business leaders in Iowa and eight other Midwestern states signals positive growth for the region over the next three-to-six months.

Ernie Goss, an economist at Creighton University, says while things are starting to pick up after several down months, international trade troubles continue to cloud the regional and national outlooks.

The Creighton survey found the regional economy expanded at a slower pace than the rest of the nation for the first half of 2019, Goss says, but overall, hiring for the region’s manufacturing sector for June was up significantly.

Still, according to the June survey, better than 71-percent of supply managers supported continuing current tariffs on China or even raising them. Finding workers to fill open positions remains a daunting chore.

Goss says the recent surveys indicate both durable and non-durable goods producers in Iowa are seeing positive gains in economic activity. Figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show Iowa workers have experienced a solid 3.6 percent increase in hourly wages over the past 12 months, above the national gain of 3.1 percent over the same period of time.

KIWA Archive Photo — Ernie Goss



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