New position in Chamber of Commerce expected to fill workforce shortage

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The Bismarck-Mandan Chamber of Commerce is looking to fill a position that could enhance business for local owners.

Businesses in Bismarck and Mandan are struggling to find workers. The need for workers in Bismarck alone has increased over the past six years.

Pete Conlin, owner of the Country House Deli says, “The problem is that we can’t keep up. The most regrettable thing is that we’re turning business away because we just cannot do it all, we just don’t have the staff. Eight years ago, I had a staff of nearly 20 people. Today, I’m working with four.”

Bismarck-Mandan Chamber of Commerce Vice President, Nathan Schneider, says a position is open in the chamber that is designed to help these businesses. The Workforce Marketing Specialists’ responsibility is to attract talents to the area to help fill these jobs. Coincidentally enough, having this position filled would help local businesses find the employees they need.

Schneider explains, “Workforce marketing specialist really leads our efforts here at the Chamber EDC. Workforce development is really educating our youth about opportunities that are available here.”

According to the Bismarck Workforce Center, there were 1,800 local job postings in July, 762 of those jobs being in the food industry.

Schneider says, “This is not a new position for us, this has been a focus for our organization for probably 5 or 6 years now. So, we’re trying to do what we can to hopefully fill those positions”

Schneider mentions that this is not just a local problem, businesses nationally are struggling with being short-staffed.

Conlin says, “I’m not encouraged by what I’m seeing out there, I’ve been seeing this shortage since 2015 and so have a lot of the other food places. Not to mention everyone else in town that has been looking for folk and it seems to get progressively worse, not better”

Conlin attributes the shortage of workers to a few factors including the COVID-19 pandemic and changing demographics in the area, but he says he hopes that smaller businesses will see a rise in employment very soon.

For more information about the open position with Bismarck-Mandan Chamber of Commerce, click here.

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