DEED Has Called More than 30,000 Unemployed Minnesotans, Connecting Them with Job Resources and Work Opportunities
An update on DEED’s Good Jobs Now campaign, proactively reaching out to Minnesotans on Unemployment Insurance to help connect them with job and training opportunities
June 3, 2021
St. Paul – Today, the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) provided an update on its Good Jobs Now campaign to reach out to unemployed Minnesotans and connect them with employers hiring now. Many Minnesotans are currently searching for jobs, and DEED is reaching out to help. Since March, the Job Service and Unemployment Insurance (UI) staff have called more than 30,000 Minnesotans who are currently receiving unemployment benefits.
During these conversations, DEED staff not only remind Minnesotans of the requirement to look for and attempt to find employment, but also talk to them about the CareerForce tools that can help their job search and about opportunities for training and work right now.
"The pandemic's impact on the labor market is unprecedented, from the initial avalanche of layoffs to the current situation where employers are seeking to hire very quickly while workers may not be able to immediately find employment that fits their family's needs and their skill sets," said DEED Commissioner Steve Grove. "The fact is that we've never seen such employment whiplash in the marketplace. There will be some friction, and it will take some time for alignment between jobs available and workers to fill them. DEED is taking an aggressive approach to connecting unemployed Minnesotans with the employers who need them now."
The Good Jobs Now campaign started the week of March 1. Initial calls were focused on Minnesotans laid off from jobs in Leisure & Hospitality, the industry sector hardest hit by initial layoffs in 2020. Since then, many Leisure & Hospitality workers have returned to work. Current calls are focused on retail workers and will soon shift to administrative and office staff.
The goal of the phone conversations is to connect unemployed Minnesotans with a good work search plan and with resources. There are solid signs this campaign is working. Over the course of Good Jobs Now, 11,954 people looking for work have created accounts on MinnesotaWorks.net, the state's official job website, to look for open positions that meet their needs and share their information with employers looking for workers with their skills and experience.
These conversations have also highlighted some natural misalignments of people out of work and the types and locations of work available. Commonly, mismatches include geographic location, necessary skills, transportation to work, work schedules to allow for child care or other family needs, wages that don't provide sustainable income and other barriers. Employers are also working to address mismatch challenges.
DEED staff are also working to connect people who are interested in developing new skills to help them find careers projected to have strong demand into the future and that offer family-sustaining wages. Since the calls began, 1,069 people have been referred to the Dislocated Worker program, 232 people have been referred to specific training programs, and 2,997 people have been referred to other services to assist them in preparing for good-paying, in-demand employment.
As of mid-April, the latest point for which data is available, we've regained 235,300 jobs, or 56.5% of the 416,300 jobs lost from February through April 2020, on a seasonally adjusted basis. The private sector has regained 57.7% of the jobs lost. Since the beginning of the year, the number of Minnesotans requesting UI benefits fell from 369,016 for the week ending January 9 to 235,427 for the week ending May 29. That's more than 130,000 Minnesotans no longer receiving UI – most of them have gone back to work – since the beginning of the year.
The types of jobs with the most availability are changing month by month in Minnesota as we work through economic recovery. These coming months are critical ones for helping workers find in-demand career path employment and for ensuring Minnesota businesses have the workers they need to grow and thrive. There will continue to be growing pains as the labor market works through the whiplash of pandemic recession recovery. It will take all of us working together to rebuild a better, stronger Minnesota economy that works for everyone.
See the Good Jobs Now resource hub that has all the tools to help job seekers in their journey, at CareerForceMN.com/GoodJobsNow.
DEED is the state's principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. For more details about the agency and its services, visit the DEED website or follow us on Twitter.