Just as many employers are struggling to find employees right now, the City has also seen a sharp decline in applicants for open positions. The number of applicants for sworn fire and police positions has declined by half from what it was just six years ago. While we’ve seen some businesses adjust their hours as a result of the workforce shortage, the City is a 24/7 operation and does not have the option to ignore a power outage, let a water main break go, cancel police patrols, or close down a fire station because we lack specialized, trained staff.
The Human Resources Department is actively implementing creative recruiting, as that is key to keeping City services flowing far into the future. Along with featuring municipal careers at job fairs, we are also using social media to attract a younger pool of applicants and will be looking for other engaging ways to spread the word like hosting more virtual career events and offering job shadow experiences.
Municipal jobs may not be on the radar or short list of careers for many high school students who are in the midst of choosing their college and career path, but they should be. Careers in local government are some of the most rewarding and effect tangible change on a very real and local level. They are challenging, offer a wide variety of skills and abilities, employ the latest technology, and pay competitively. Municipal jobs are also some of the few that still offer pension plans and stability.
The new generation of students is hard-working, smart, and resourceful and we need their skill and expertise to solve challenges such as climate change, housing, infrastructure, and more. If you have or know a student exploring career options, encourage them to consider a municipal career. The Human Resources page on the City website is a great place to start exploring.