Survey reveals reasons behind labor shortage in Portage area

by | Jun 5, 2022

There are many reasons employers are having trouble finding workers, but most of them have to do with the need for flexibility, according to a study commissioned by Portage, Summit and Medina counties.

Christine Marshall, executive director of the Summit and Medina Workforce Area Council of Governments, said Summit, Medina and Portage counties collaborated to study the labor shortage, and examine the root causes.

Among the findings, Marshall told Portage County commissioners, are that workers want employers to include salary information in their job listings, freelance and contract work is a growing part of the job landscape, that COVID-19 has had a big impact on people looking for work, there are mixed feelings about vaccine mandates in the workplace, and workers have a high interest in job training and education.

The group hired the Center for Marketing & Opinion Research, which surveyed 800 adults in each of the three counties. The firm is now conducting focus groups to further examine the data collected.

Nationally, she said, overall participation in the workforce has been falling steadily since 2000, as Baby Boomers begin to retire.

The Summit and Medina Workforce Area Council of Governments is a partner in the Fund’s Where Are the Workers initiative, focusing research on the Greater Akron community, which includes Summit, Medina and Portage Counties. Continue the full story here.