Job Brief

October 2021 ι VOLUME 12 ι ISSUE 9
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Employers - Your employees may qualify for the Service Industry Recovery CHILDCARE assistance initiative. Click here for details and SHARE the link.
Upcoming Events

Booths are available for the HRWY - Veterans Job Fair

New Date for the 2022 Youth Career Expo

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Workforce Board News

The Southeast Texas Workforce Board is scheduled to meet Tuesday, November 2, 2021, at 9:30 am. Please visit our website , for details.
Workforce Forums Highlight Industry Concerns and Opportunities
Workforce Solutions Southeast Texas Workforce analysts brought together representatives from the Hospitality and Construction industries to discuss business needs and overall recovery, post pandemic. Representatives from both Forums responded positively regarding the area's economic and employment improvement since the pandemic. Business leaders participating in the two Forums provided feedback on various issues
such as workplace culture and retention, meeting hiring needs, and skills gaps. The forum was facilitated by an independent consulting firm.

Comments from the participants of the Hospitality Forum indicated they expected a continued increase in sales and occupancy although retaining employees was still a challenge. It was noted that some local restaurants have scaled back on hours of operation due to lack of full staffing. The group discussed employee retention trends such as cash incentives, lump-sum bonuses, and providing additional time off for workers that consistently show up on the job. Other issues discussed in the Hospitality Forum included:
  • Supervisor and Manager burn-out
  • Competing with rising wages, benefits offered by larger retailers
  • Declining enrollment on the post-secondary level
  • Lack of interest/view of limited earning potential
The Construction Forum group discussed the increased need for workers due to the restarting of refinery expansion projects and new industrial construction in Southeast Texas and Southwest Louisiana. Many pointed to the retirement of baby-boomers and the looming skills drought due to knowledgeable individuals leaving the industry. All participants generally agreed that issues with drug screening and background checks still nagged the Construction industry and negatively impacted the ability to hire and maintain staffing levels. According to the Forum participants, the local Construction industry is expected to continue to grow and the need for welders, pipefitters, process operators, truck drivers, painters, laborers, and supervisors remains in high demand.

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Southeast Texas Works! Podcast News
In October, three new Podcasts were released and featured various engaging guests including a local college president, a K-12 education partner, and a USMC veteran:

Supporting K-12 Education and Preparing a Skilled Future Workforce: Our guest for this podcast was Maris Peno, director, Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, Region 5 Education Service Center. Peno discusses pathways for students, the importance of exploring careers, and how Region 5 ESC supports the needs of school districts in our workforce area. She is an important partner is connecting to schools for planning and executing the Youth Career Expo (YCE) each year.

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It is with great sadness that we report the passing of our workforce board member Dr. Kerry Mix, Provost, Lamar Institute of Technology (LIT). The Texas Workforce Commission approved his appointment to the Southeast Texas Workforce Board In January 2020, representing post-secondary education, Jefferson County. He served on the board's Planning Evaluation & Oversight (PE&O) and Business Services committees. He also was a guest on the Southeast Texas Works! Podcast in August where he encouraged individuals to 'seize the day' and take advantage of the 2-for-1 courses at LIT.

Dr. Mix leaves a wife, three children, a host of family, friends and colleagues. Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones. Please click here to read his final tribute.

Take Note: Local Access to Resources for Employers

Workforce Solutions Southeast Texas maintains a Resource Information page for employers and businesses. Selecting "Employers" from the banner on website will provide access to the following:

Labor Market Information - current and historical unemployment data, local and state-wide.
Employee Search - direct link to
For Your Business - services for businesses, hiring and tax incentives, funds for training employees.
Vocational Rehabilitation - information to help your business obtain and retain employees with disabilities.
Other Resources - Covid 19 updates, Cares Act information, How to Report Fraud, and more.

Need additional assistance? Please contact us at or call 1-877-834-5627.
Unemployment Rates - September 2021

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