THE ISSUES

UNEMPLOYMENT

Georgia currently has some of the lowest unemployment numbers in the past three decades. As a matter of fact, last year we had the fewest number of claims since 1990! That doesn’t mean that our work is done. We must continue to work to help the unemployed and underemployed achieve better wages through training. Our strong relationships with job training programs help us steer individuals to programs to learn new skills. But, we saw a gap in another area of skills – soft skills. That is why we developed GeorgiaBest, our soft skills training program, to help job seekers. We also hold weekend and after-hours job expos to help those who are underemployed find better opportunities. Now is the time to take advantage of this strong job market to help Georgians reach their economic potential.

During the Great Recession, the state’s unemployment rate hit an all-time high of 10.6 percent on five occasions, the last of the five occurring December 2010 (national rate was 9.3%).

Below are comparisons from then to now.

TECHNOLOGY

Commissioner Butler’s team has brought more technology upgrades to the Georgia Department of Labor than the four previous administrations combined. His IT team has brought award winning innovation to the Department and has been recognized by state and national technology associations. The team will continue to improve our state’s technology for even better customer service and to help our efforts to recruit more individuals to the thousands of current job openings.

EMPLOYMENT

Through our commitment to Georgia’s job seekers and businesses, we have seen our unemployment rate go from over 10% to as low as 4%. From our Regional Coordinator program that help’s businesses find the talent that they need to our Special Workforce Assistance Team that helps job seekers be better prepared for their job search, we have helped Georgia break records for total number of jobs and total number of individuals employed. We will continue to bring even more innovation to Georgia’s job market where we continue to be a leader in job creation and employment.

ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES

We will continue to work with all of Georgia’s communities in building our future workforce so our children can take advantage of Georgia’s #1 ranked business environment. Mark’s team has forged alliances with universities, technical colleges, local school systems and local economic developers to make sure that our neighbors and families have the best economic opportunities available.