Pioneer Valley reacts to latest unemployment numbers - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Pioneer Valley reacts to latest unemployment numbers


In the month of May, 3,500 jobs were added in Massachusetts, bringing the total for the year to 14,500.

As far as the Pioneer Valley goes, officials said there are a couple of specific fields leading the way.

"It continues to be health care driven, administrative services driven in terms of where the hiring is coming," said Kevin Lynn, Manager of Business Services for FutureWorks Career Center. "Those are the primary drivers locally."

Lynn said the slow up-turn in those areas are not enough to keep the unemployment rate from rising. It crept up one-tenth of a point to 6.6 percent. Lynn said that is because of more people looking for work, which coincides with employers willing to pay a bit more to find the right fit.

"The wage they have been paying has not been enough to entice people who do have the skills they are looking for back into the labor market," Lynn stated.

"[Some companies] are seeing some light at the end of the tunnel, but there are still some cases that they are not really there yet," said Brian Houle, who owns Spherion, a staffing services company.

He says the job market locally, especially for temporary hires has been flat since October of last year.

"I do not think anything in particular is percolating," said Houle. "There is some hope here and there and in some areas, but nothing is really strong per se."

Houle told CBS 3 the one area that has been solid are the highly-skilled jobs. He said the issue is that companies are not just taking anyone to fill an opening.

"The hard part is getting a pool of people to present to them, so they feel that they can hire this person," Houle stated. "There is some trepidation there, in regards to do we have the best possible person for this position."

Houle also had advice for college students who will be entering the work-force soon.

He said companies love seeing internships on an applicant's resume, as it means they have already had some hands-on experience.

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