Major companies including Amazon and UPS announce seasonal hiring plans in the Triangle

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Friday, October 7, 2022
Major companies including Amazon and UPS announce seasonal hiring
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Several companies including Amazon and UPS are sharing plans for seasonal hiring nationally, including here in the Triangle.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Several companies are sharing plans for seasonal hiring nationally, including here in the Triangle.

"In the Raleigh area, which is very competitive, we have raised that assigned rate. So we did that, not only this year, but last year too," said Henry Beard with UPS.

UPS said hires would start at the beginning of November, with some working through mid-January.

"About 80% of our peak workers become full or part-time employees," said Beard.

The tight labor market is forcing companies to take steps to attract talent, ranging from higher wages to bonuses; Amazon is offering up to $1,000 for signing on.

"You're definitely seeing the competition for labor means the price of labor is going to go up. Again that's beneficial to workers. You're seeing workers who tended to be on the lower scale, lower income, lower education, are able to take advantage of this, and that's really good," said Gerald Cohen, Chief Economist of Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise.

The unemployment rate in North Carolina is 3.5%, slightly lower than the national average of 3.7%.

"I think that's a real challenge to be blunt," said Michael Haley, Executive Director of Wake County Economic Development, as he discussed companies looking to fill seasonal roles.

Strong population growth and a large college community could help offset some of the hiring challenges.

"You're talking over 130,000 students involved in higher education of some kind. They are a wonderful resource and workforce for our local companies wanting that seasonal hire," said Haley.

Long-term, he stressed the importance of connecting with those students at a young-age. A study by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute finding the skills gap could result in more than 2 million unfilled manufacturing jobs by 2030 -

"Advanced manufacturing jobs are critical to our regional economy. That's why our partners like Wake Tech are doing such a tremendous job in training people, upskilling, training people, or helping people transition into those jobs," said Haley.

These jobs announcements are just the latest to come to the Triangle, which has seen several high-profile announcements, many of which are in the tech and life sciences fields, over the past two years.

"The diversity of our economy is very important. Being around a lot of other innovative, smart companies is a necessary function for a lot of companies as they themselves innovate. Quality of life, obviously cost of living, those are the things that we all enjoy here and other companies are seeing that as well," said Haley.

In 2021, the National Retail Federation reported holiday sales increased by more than 14% from the previous year; ensuring smooth supply chains is key to maintain momentum.

"Clearly, transport issues have been a big bottleneck for supply chains. But it's not the only bottle neck. It's one of many. Getting chips, getting stuff that's produced in China which has tougher shutdown policies, given backlogs of production in the United States," Cohen said.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is set to release the September monthly jobs report Friday morning.

In addition to UPS, companies announcing plans to hire in the area include Amazon, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's.

UPS is hosting a job fair Saturday, looking for about 1,240 workers to fill driver and package handler roles.

Amazon, which has a company-wide minimum wage of $15 an hour, announced plans to hire 150,000 workers nationally.

While Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's are looking for 55 retail workers in the area.

Those positions have starting pay at $21 per hour and $17.65 per hour, respectively.