From truck drivers to nurses, retail workers, to customer service representatives, thousands of jobs are available in Alabama right now. That's reflected in the state's latest unemployment numbers too. Overall the news is good when it comes to unemployment in Alabama. The unemployment rate fell to 6.8 percent in May down one-tenth of a percent from April, and well below the 7.5 percent from one year ago.
There are several occupations in high demand. But you have know the market and what is required to get your foot in the door.
"Just happened to look on the St. Vincent's website and saw the position that I applied for which was the educator in the emergency department. So I applied and received notification that I was approved for an interview the next day," said Lisa Bagby, a nurse at St. Vincent's Hospital.
She landed a job at St. Vincent's hospital seven months ago. She's been a nurse for the past seventeen years, but recently graduated with a master's degree from UAB. Bagby says nurses are in higher demand now than they were when she first started. "There's been an increase in demand for healthcare in general across the board. Plus expansion of outpatient services and different community based services have created more job openings in health care," said Bagby.
Recent reports from the Alabama Department of Labor show registered nurses were among the top twenty occupations that had job openings last month. John O'Neil is president and CEO of St. Vincent's health system.
He says several factors contribute to the need for more health care positions. "One is retirements. I think you'll see retirements rise in the future because people who may have wanted to retire five or six years ago but couldn't because the economy took a dip. Now they feel like it's more comfortable so that will provide openings," said O'Neil.
O'Neil also says the aging baby boomer generation and fewer people with health care are driving the demand as well. Bagby's advice to anyone wanting to enter healthcare."Don't give up. Sometimes the online process can seem cumbersome. Just make sure to get a contact person, and actual person to call and say hey can you help me navigate this system. And I can't stress enough education. Continue to push forward with education," said Bagby.
For a breakdown of job postings from the Alabama Department of Labor visit http://dir.alabama.gov/.