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Knox County businesses express need for skilled workers

Knox County businesses see an increase in job openings and a need for skilled workers

Posted: Mar 13, 2019 6:47 PM
Updated: May 22, 2019 11:10 AM

KNOX COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) - Business leaders and county officials filled the Green Activities Center Wednesday afternoon. One of those in attendance was Jeremy Kunz with Garmong construction. He says getting skilled workers isn't always easy.

Kunz says, "It's a challenge. We're fortunate enough to have a partnership with a lot of trade organizations. But it's a challenge across our industry."

Many of those in attendance agree. Recently the Knox County Development Corporation questioned twelve local businesses. All of those organizations reported concerns with the workforce.

KCDC CEO Kent Utt explains, "Every one of the twelve that we spoke to were needing additional training, additional people, just a different work ethic."

Many of those concerns are rooted in needing skilled workers. But a lot of concern comes back to the low unemployment rate.

Utt says, "More around the fact that they're growing. You don't always see that. I guess it's kind of a good and a bad thing when your unemployment is so low. But it's been nice."

According to the KCDC, the average hourly wage in Knox County is $18.38. Utt says that progress looks to continue.

Utt explains, "You see the city and the county working together. Not all communities have that. So many of the things they're doing they're collaborating on. And it really makes a difference."

Kunz says those job opportunities look to continue for Garmong.

Kunz says, "A lot of people are always going to be needed. Because people are always building or renovating."

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