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July 8, 2014

Manufacturers offered help in finding workers

DUNCAN — The Duncan Area Economic Development Foundation has offered to pay the first year’s costs to have a community-based Internet job network help find workers for local manufacturing companies, DAEDF President Lyle Roggow said Monday.

The chief executive officer of NationJob, Ralph Hejlik, will tell Duncan area employers what his company can offer during a meeting at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Red River Technology Center.

Roggow has invited about 45 major employers to the meeting, he said.

With unemployment in the area at a low 4.2 percent, Roggow said employers have a shallow field of skilled workers in which to find new hands.

Halliburton, Duncan’s largest employer, is “having a major ramp up” and is hiring about 150 new workers while other manufacturing businesses also are in hiring mode, Roggow said.

About 22,000 people are employed in Stephens County while about 800 are jobless.

“That just doesn’t give the companies a lot of individuals to pick from,” Roggow said.

NationJob could help companies find skilled workers on the east and west coasts, Roggow said.

So far, local employers have been receptive to the idea of hiring the company, he said, adding that employers with payrolls of only three or four workers also could take advantage of NationJob if it is hired to help Stephens County employers find qualified workers.

DAEDF, a nonprofit foundation funded by a portion of sales tax receipts, would carry the costs for the first year, Roggow said.

NationJob, based in Ames, Iowa,  was initially formed as the National Employment Wire Service Corp. in California in 1988.  

It advertised job openings on stand-alone personal computers placed in college career centers, updated via modem transfer or mailed diskettes.

The company’s network of sites grew with the purchase of  two competitors, Career Counseling Network and Joblink, and with the installation of systems into public libraries, shopping centers and military bases. At its peak, the network exceeded 400 sites in the U.S.  and in Europe.

  The company began using the Internet in 1995.

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