Are the Unemployed Just Too Picky?

AOL Jobs asks a question that, on its surface, seems massively insensitive and out of touch. How can the unemployed be picky? Aren’t people desperately seeking employment? As it turns out, there is evidence that many positions, particularly seasonal work, remain unfilled, and actually need to incentivize potential applicants:

…shipping companies such as UPS Inc. and GSI Commerce Inc. can’t find enough workers to staff warehouses in Louisville, Ky., a region with a 7.5 percent jobless rate.

According to the local Courier-Journal newspaperUPS still had 200 openings paying $8.50 an hour on four shifts this week, three months after it announced plans to hire 1,000 temporary workers. To help recruiting efforts, the Atlanta-based parcel-delivery company has offered employees $150 bonuses for referring new hires, who also get the bonus.

Meanwhile, GSI Commerce, an eBay Inc. subsidiary, needs 300 people in the Louisville area, offering applicants wages of $9.25 to $10 an hour plus bonuses tied to attendance and performance. Online retailer Amazon.com Inc. is also hiring in the region, offering a starting wage of $12 an hour for positions in packing and shipping, among others.

So why are the jobs going unfilled? In part, the shortage is caused by the large number of shipping companies in the area — dozens of which have been attracted by the UPS Worldport sorting hub at the Louisville International Airport.

“We have attracted so many companies to come to the area and bring jobs here that they are competing for some of the same workers that we would like to have out in our hub,” UPS spokesman Mike Mangeot told the newspaper.

Obviously, all this is anecdotal. I don’t think we can draw accurate conclusions about the job market nationally, however, I am sure there is a grain of truth somewhere to be found here. What do you think? Generally speaking, are unemployed job seekers being too picky?

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4 Responses to Are the Unemployed Just Too Picky?

  1. foziasaeed says:

    Those that have the option to be picky will most likely have other means to fund their lifestyle.
    Those who want to work will take what they can until the ideal job turns up.

  2. I think you are right that there is a grain of truth to this, but I don’t think this is true for most of the unemployed.

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