St. Louis’ economy is doing well, but employers are having a harder time finding skilled employees, according to the 2015 State of St. Louis Workforce Report released by St. Louis Community College on Wednesday.
The unemployment rate for St. Louis is 5.8 percent, nearly half what it was in 2009 when the community college first released the annual report. The number of unemployed has dropped to 84,000 in 2015 from 104,000 in 2013.
For the first time, 57 percent of employers said the biggest barrier to expanding their workforce was finding workers with knowledge or skills. Steve Long, associate vice chancellor of St. Louis Community College’s Workforce Solutions Group, said in the past, economic conditions came in as the number one reason. He said it’s a good indication that the labor market is improving.
For the first time, the report also included a survey of people who come from economically disadvantaged populations.