While the number of unemployed Idahoans has steadily declined since May 2009, jobless rates for broader definitions of unemployed – such as discouraged, underemployed and marginally attached workers – improved significantly in 2016.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) identifies six measures, or categories, of unemployment rates based on varying components of the labor force – U-1, U-2, U-3, U-4, U-5 and U-6. (See Figure 1 for definitions.) In Idaho, the official unemployment rate falls into the U-3 category.
Idaho’s broadest measure, U-6, improved to No. 12 in the nation in 2016, three spots better than last year and 23 spots better than the No.35 ranking in 2009 as the nation was coming out of the Great Recession. The U-6 rate is the broadest formal measure of labor underutilization – or underemployment – the BLS reports. It’s determined by the total number of unemployed persons, plus all marginally attached workers, plus the total number of workers who are employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force plus all marginally attached workers, Many economists use this definition as the most statistically reliable measure because it uses the most robust protocols for sampling and data collection. Continue reading
Thirty-six work-related deaths were recorded in Idaho in 2015, up slightly from 34 fatalities in 2014. Twenty-two of the 2015 workplace deaths in Idaho occurred during transportation incidents.
Nationally, fatalities increased by 0.3 percent from 4,821 to 4,836.
Twenty-two of the 2015 workplace deaths in Idaho occurred during transportation incidents, which were the leading cause of workplace deaths over the past 10 years in Idaho – ranging from 42 percent in 2005 to 70 percent in 2011. Nearly one-third of the transportation incidents occurred in the agriculture sector.
Contact with objects and equipment was responsible for six Idaho deaths in 2015. Four fatalities were due to exposure to harmful substances. The cause of four deaths could not be disclosed due to confidentiality restrictions.
Graduating cadets can continue their education or use the certificates they earned to go immediately into the workforce with their in-demand skills. (Photo courtesy of Idaho Youth ChalleNGe Academy)
A year ago the Idaho Youth ChalleNGe Academy in Pierce wanted to enhance its technical training and career readiness programs but lacked the funding to do so. The $25,000 Workforce Development Training Fund micro-grant it received from the Idaho Department of Labor has helped make these plans a reality for the one year duration of the grant.
A dozen or so local organizations have also jumped in and donated their time, materials and expertise to help the academy improve the training offered to the at-risk teens who attend the academy from throughout the state. In-kind donations from partnering organizations amounted to more than $36,000 of goods and services. Local organizations have donated supplies such as scrap metal and building supplies used in the metal fabrication and construction courses as well as donating their time which includes instruction hours or general job skills training like mock-interviews.
Two AceCo employees troubleshoot a newly added accessory to a Lathe.
AceCo received a $25,000 Workforce Training Fund grant a year ago that continues to yield growth for the Boise company.
AceCo applied for the grant when the company found itself unable to hire new CNC machinists with the level of experience or GibbsCAM training required. The grant enabled the company to provide the needed training to employees currently in entry level positions, helping both the company and the employees.
Workforce Training Funds allowed AceCo to fly in a trainer so the employees could receive the specialized GibbsCAM training required. “These machinists were all entry level employees with some experience in the field but lacked the specific training we needed them to have,” said Jonathan Scobby, controller for AceCo. “These employees each received a certification of completion and experience which makes them more competitive because they can take that anywhere.”
One of the most important aspects of the job as a manager is hiring new employees. Taking the time to find someone who is not just capable of doing the job well, but who is also a good fit for the company is important.
Finding the right person for the job also will save time and money down the road but ensuring your job posting is done correctly can be a bit puzzling. Following a few simple steps in the hiring process will help ensure a great fit.
Write better job titles
“A good job title is essential,” said Darren Rux, a senior workforce consultant in the Department of Labor Boise office. The job title should be specific and reflect what the job actually does rather than a generic job title. Don’t use cutesy job titles and avoid clichés. Make sure the job title is not confusing or misleading or prospective employees may pass on applying. When hiring for a position above entry level, try to include the level of seniority the position requires.
Idaho is one of 37 recipients that will use a $1.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to expand registered apprenticeships throughout the state in health care, information technology, advanced manufacturing and energy.
Earlier this year the state received a $200,000 planning grant to develop a strategy.
“Idaho businesses are calling for a pipeline of skilled workers with industry-specific training and hands-on experience,” said Idaho Department of Labor Director Kenneth D. Edmunds. “This grant will allow us to help meet those needs and increase the number of registered apprenticeships throughout the state.” Continue reading
Hilex Poly Co. will use $157,500 in Idaho Workforce Development Training funds from the Department of Labor to hire and train 45 new employees in equipment operations, mechanics, quality assurance, safety, training and materials handling.
Wages for the 45 new positions will range from $22.50 to no less than $12 per hour and will average $15.48 per hour with employer-assisted medical benefits.
Hilex Poly expects all the new employees will be hired by Sept. 30, 2017.
Read the full news release for more details.