The supply and cost of workers and high labor turnover are among top concerns of Idaho businesses who participated in an Idaho Department of Labor survey this spring.
This inaugural Idaho business climate survey was designed to uncover significant business concerns, desired labor force skills, leadership demographics, remote work trends and future growth expectations among Idaho employers.
Economist Lisa Grigg says building more housing in north central Idaho could help fill crucial job openings in the area
This article originally was published in the Lewiston Tribune. It is republished here with permission.
By Elaine Williams, The Lewiston Tribune
Lisa Grigg, labor economist with the Idaho Department of Labor, poses for a photo at her desk Wednesday in Lewiston. August Frank/Tribune
Constructing more housing might help ease a labor shortage in north central Idaho driven by an aging population.
That observation comes from Lisa Grigg, an economist with the Idaho Department of Labor who is based in Lewiston.
“Our area has under-built for the past decade,” she said. “We just don’t have space for those people who are in their 20s and have a great job and are making a solid income. There’s no places for them to rent and housing prices are out of reach for most.”
Out of all metropolitan areas in the Gem State, Lewiston has the highest median wages for skilled trade workers. Electricians and plumbers make up to $60,000 a year, where welders and HVAC technicians can make $50,000. With Lewiston’s growth – the population has increased by more than 500 residents each year since 2020 – the demand for skilled trades will also increase.
To help residents learn about these career fields, the Idaho Department of Labor is hosting a Skilled Trade Career event Thursday, Aug. 10 from 4 to 6 p.m. Attendees can explore careers in HVAC, plumbing, welding and electrical industries.
Effective today, the Idaho Department of Labor’s Orofino mobile location has moved. Its new location is 416 Johnson Ave. Suite 19.
The new location will continue its usual operating hours of Mondays, from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1 to 3 p.m. The mobile location will also be open on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Additional meeting times are available by appointment.
A mix of entry level and higher-level skilled jobs will be offered on Tuesday, July 11 from noon to 4 p.m. at a hiring event taking place at the Ukrainian Welcome Center in Nampa. The center is located at 304 16th Ave. N.
Positions open range across industries including cashiers, school bus drivers, production, administrative, industrial, retail, child care and many more.
Over 100 jobs will be available for job seekers from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, June 21 at Labor’s Post Falls Hiring Event. The event takes place at the Idaho Department of Labor office, located at 600 N. Thornton St.
Employers planning to attend include Cabela’s, Sleep Inn Post Falls, Environmental Control, Sherwin Williams, Sage Truck Driving School, North Idaho Dental Personnel, Bonner County Human Resources, Badger Building Supply, Texas Roadhouse, Arrow Construction Supply and more. All of the employers planning to attend are listed in the Idaho Department of Labor’s calendar of events.
Eastern Idaho employers with the highest number of job openings in the region will be at a hiring event Wednesday, June 14 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Idaho Falls Department of Labor office located at 1515 E. Lincoln Road.
Veterans Brandon McCullough and Jeremy Coak work together at Precision Propeller Services to make sure a propeller has the parts it needs for a safe flight.
Hiring in industries that don’t require a college degree can be challenging. Certain industries need highly trained individuals to meet job requirements. Registered Apprenticeship programs help meet that need by providing on-the-job training to create a qualified professional.
For Ted Chester, owner of Precision Propeller Services in Boise, the Idaho Registered Apprenticeship program gave his company the talent with the skills they need to learn how to craft various propellers. Chester has been using the program for three to four years to grow his business.
“I was really impressed. The Idaho Department of Labor apprenticeship team walked me through all the steps for creating a Registered Apprenticeship,” Chester said. “It was a good experience.”
Idaho nonprofit, educational, community and faith-based organizations, Indian tribes and local governments are eligible to apply for federal funding through Serve Idaho, the Governor’s Commission on Service and Volunteerism.
Up to five organizations will receive funding up to $75,000 each for planning grants to explore the feasibility of operating an AmeriCorps program. These funds allow time and financial resources for organizations to determine how an AmeriCorps program and its members could help solve community problems.