Jobs Still Available in Tough Economy

Job experts said several industries in San Diego continue to hire despite dire unemployment numbers and layoffs. 

Mel Katz at staffing firm Manpower says jobs in the medical industry, research and development, information technology and engineering are still widely available in the county.  Green and clean energy jobs are also available. "Companies are searching for people to work on solar panels and installing solar panels," said Katz.  Katz also said biofuels companies are also looking to fill positions.

Katz said if people don't have the training for those jobs, they can often find it at local community colleges.  "They really have some great classes to teach you some specific skills that are marketable right now in this marketplace," he said.  Katz said some of the courses only last six months.

Unemployment numbers from the labor department hit 7.2%, the highest reading since January 1993.   San Diego's unemployment for November was 6.8% but one local economist expect that number to rise sharply. "We're going to go up from here.  I could see it rising to 8% and possibly higher than 8% by the summertime," said Kelly Cunningham of the San Diego Institute for Policy Research.  He said part of the increase will come from retailers who were waiting until the end of the holiday season before shutting doors and laying off employees.

For those who have lost their jobs, staffing experts say people must be diligent and disciplined in looking for work.  "Looking for a job, is a job.  I would wake up every single morning and say from 8:00 to 10:00, I do this.  From 10:00 to 11:00, I do this," he said.  He also recommended finding people who work within the company to make ensure the right person sees your resume.

Katz also says networking is very important to meet potential employers or those who can facilitate the job search.

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