Employers struggle to fill jobs amid surge in openings, employment agency says

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Businesses in Northeast Florida need workers, CareerSource Northeast Florida, an employment agency, says.

“Over the last few months we’ve had businesses approach us to help fill positions of about 3,000 or more,” Rebecca Livingston with CareerSource said.

The agency reports from May to June, 4,084 Floridians visited its Northeast Florida officers for help finding and filling jobs.

Stimulus update: IRS sends out next batch of stimulus checks

“What we are hearing from employers is that they are facing challenges in hiring people for their positions. The jobs exist, but there just aren’t enough seeking work right now,” Livingston added.

These are challenges felt across the nation.

New data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports a massive spike in job openings -- 9.3 million of them, which is a 12% increase from the 8.3 million openings in March.

Yet employers hired just 6.1 million people, the data show.

Locally, CareerSource doesn’t have data to answer why employers are having a hard time filling jobs.

Meanwhile, the state plans to stop giving Floridians on unemployment the additional $300 a week from the federal government.

“To me $300 dollars is a help,” Will Lipscomb said. He isn’t on unemployment himself, but says a couple hundred dollars can make or break a family.

A mom who didn’t want to identify herself told Action News Jax the decision will cause more harm than good.

“They’re getting knocked down, so the only way they can get back up is the unemployment,” she said.

Local News: INVESTIGATES: Acosta Bridge to be lit with rainbow colors for remainder of the week

In the meantime, CareerSource wants people in Northeast Florida to know they’re not on their own.

The agency helps people get jobs and fill positions free of charge.

The agency says it’s seeing an increase in hospitality and retail jobs -- those jobs were hit hardest during the COVID-19 pandemic.