Help Wanted: Labor Shortages Sweep the Nation


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Workers needed across America

In recent months, you may have noticed “help wanted” signs outside most businesses. Whether it be fast food, retail, or anything in between. Across the nation, and indeed in Lenoir City, businesses are suffering from a lack of workers.

One example includes the local Lenoir City Wendy’s restaurant. According to employee Ash McCullough (11), its management has urged employees to help find workers.

“I overheard my manager talking to my coworkers, asking them to talk to friends or family members to see if they needed a job. She even asked me to work two shifts,” McCullough said.

Another example can be found at the Lenoir City Sonic Drive-In, where employees are forced to work longer and later. According to worker Guage Green (11), the shortage of workers forces him to close the kitchen by himself, often long after hours.

“I have to stay later hours because I close the kitchen alone. The latest I’ve stayed was 1:30 in the morning, on a fifteen-hour shift. It was really tough on me,” Green said.

This issue is ongoing across the nation. According to a JOLTS (Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey) report, there were a record 11.1 million job openings across the nation in July, the most since the survey began in 2000. The shortage of employees is particularly difficult on small businesses, who are being forced to cut hours and/or services.

The lack of workers will continue to disrupt supply chains, resulting in shortages and higher prices. Despite these challenges, there is a silver lining for working-class Americans: If you are unhappy with your current job and are seeking a change, now is the time.

Because of the shortage of workers, companies are more willing to hire new employees, desperate even, and are offering extra benefits, such as sign-on bonuses and higher pay. Basically, it is now easier than ever to get your foot in the door. 

So for everyone seeking employment: help is wanted!