April 5, 2016
ISSUE | PA. BUDGET Brain drain? The editorial "With a whimper" (March 24) highlights Pennsylvania's failure to pass a budget that adequately invests in human services. The state legislature has repeatedly failed to pass a budget that raises new revenue. As a result, human services have been sorely underfunded and could face drastic cuts if revenue is not increased this year. Failing to invest in human services has serious implications for the nonprofit job market.
March 7, 2016
Has America's job market broken? Are we becoming a nation of part-timers? Of underemployed young people and can't-afford-to-be-retirees stitching together low-wage workweeks? That's one view of a "gig economy," in which - except for company owners - all our cars are taxis, our homes are hotels, and none of our weekly hours qualifies for company benefits. So we have to buy high-deductible health plans on the not-so-free market? "Gig work reflects the more flexible or fragmented work arrangements of many in today's labor market," namely Uber and Lyft drivers, TaskRabbit "freelance laborers," Upwork free-lancers, and Etsy salespeople, writes John Silvia, the Pennsylvania native who serves as chief economist at Wells Fargo & Co., in a recent report on the "gig" economy.
February 9, 2016 |
For a new college graduate, finding a job is stressful. That first job is more than a paycheck. It represents the accumulation of hours of hard work and a start on a stable future. In a job market dominated by resumés, connections, and previous work experience, college students will often turn to internships, paid and unpaid, to gain a competitive edge. While paid internships are usually seen as similar to other jobs, unpaid internships have come under increased scrutiny. Critics contend that since employers know students are desperate for experience, workplaces can abuse their interns with long hours and poor work conditions, all without compensation.
October 6, 2015 |
When, after 28 years, Beverly Wiker lost her administrative job at Pepperidge Farm's plant in Downingtown, "it felt like a death in the family," she said. "I was in shock," she said, sitting in an Exton classroom with other unemployed people, who have become her new, extended family, united by their unwilling membership in the world of long-term joblessness. What also unites this group is renewed hope generated by a program launched last month in Chester County targeting the long-term unemployed.
October 5, 2015 |
Two things may be happening - simultaneously - to Sandy Ellis-Johnson, 59, caught in a long cycle of part-time jobs when she needs full-time work. She may actually get a job, and she may become homeless as soon as Monday. The owner of the house where she's living is moving tenants out to make repairs. And with her part-time income of $7.25 an hour for 20 hours a week, Ellis-Johnson doesn't make enough to find another place. More than 7.5 million part-time American workers are older than 50, and for most of them, 4 out of 5, part-time work is a choice - with income as a motivator, but also job satisfaction and a desire to stay connected to the work world.
February 16, 2015 |
Job-market improvements mean more people feel free to change jobs. But leaving a job can be difficult, even on the best of terms. Here are some guidelines for making a graceful exit. "Since the days of being loyal to one organization for an entire career are long gone, moving from one company to another is something that all of us will probably do," writes Ron Ashkenas, a contributor at Forbes.com. But, he asks in this post, "why do talented, bright, and capable people figuratively burn their bridges behind them?"
December 7, 2014 |
The nation's businesses added a whopping 321,000 jobs in November, demonstrating strength in the job market. But Kenny Dubin, who runs a recruiting company in Bala Cynwyd, didn't need Friday's report from the U.S. Labor Department to evaluate the economy. "October and November were the two best direct-hire months in the history of my company," said Dubin, chief executive of the Dubin Group, founded in 1998. Not only did the nation's payrolls add 321,000 jobs in November, beating expectations, but the Labor Department revised data from earlier months, adding 44,000 jobs to the numbers reported in September and October.
November 23, 2014 |
I spent the first six months of the year hearing real estate agents complain there just wasn't enough for sale to satisfy prospective buyers. The supply shortage - that is, a shortage of houses that buyers wanted, houses that were up to date and properly priced - lasted well past the spring selling season ending June 30. And it was widespread. For "Town by Town" in the Sunday Business section, I visited 26 municipalities and neighborhoods in eight counties, and of the 75 real estate agents and builders I interviewed, all but two started the conversations lamenting a shortage of listings.
October 30, 2014 |
It has been a rough two years for Scott Smith of National Park since he lost his job in manufacturing. However, he remained optimistic Tuesday alongside the other hopeful candidates who filled the Collingswood Grand Ballroom at the Camden County Job Fair. "I'm looking for anything," said Smith, 55. "Two years is a long time. " While the attendees looking for a job represented a wide spread of age and education levels, the potential employers were no less diverse. More than 100 companies, from newspapers to Pepsi-Cola, were looking for candidates to hire.
September 17, 2014 |
DENISE THOMPSON used to think she had the most stable job in the world - working on an overnight shift at a large Mellon Bank office in Center City, processing checks. It was what she did five nights a week for 17 years. Then one evening in March 2009, the company told her and her co-workers it was laying off her entire shift, due to both the Great Recession and changes in check-processing technology. About 5 1/2 years later, Thompson - now 49, living in West Philadelphia - never found another job. At first, she said, she wasn't looking too hard for new work because she lives mortgage-free in a home that she'd inherited from her mom. But soon, the everyday bills began to pile up. When she finally hit the job market in earnest, she learned that her experience in check-processing didn't match well with the few openings that were out there - and the longer she went without a job on her resume, the fewer responses she got. "I thought for sure that my skills could transfer," Thompson said, although she now thinks her lack of customer-service experience has held her back.