VeloCity September 2021

LEADERSHIP NOTES

UNEMPLOYMENT RATE SIGN OF ECONOMIC STRENGTH

“Dr. Burkhart is really smart, because he went to a lot of schools.”

Everywhere you go right now the inability of companies to find the employees they need is a hot topic of conversation. Like many trends, I believe the COVID pandemic has merely accelerated an issue already occurring issue in our community. The good news for our citizens? Our unemployment rate in July dipped below 3% in Oklahoma City again to only 2.9%. One of the lowest in the US, and one that many experts indicates full employment in the area. For companies looking to hire, this presents a challenge. There are a couple myths I have been hearing about unemployment and workforce availability that I want to dispel – or at least shed a little light. Many incorrectly believe that the unemployment rate is directly tied to the number of people receiving assistance, when it is actually based on a survey the Bureau of Labor Statistics has been implementing since 1940. This survey helps determine the number of people in the workforce, how many are employed, and how many are unemployed and looking for work . Oklahoma County’s available workforce number is actually growing. Many think that the number of people without a job who are not looking for a job has increased but the numbers say otherwise. In July of 2019, the number of people in the workforce was 694,074. In July of 2020, that number dropped slightly to 693,162. In July of 2021, there was a healthy increase to 705,360. Oklahoma City is a growing market with growing demand and a growing workforce. We must all take a hard look at how we recruit and retain our talent and how we can help our existing workforce meet the needs of tomorrow. I know here at the Chamber, we are constantly looking for ways to help in those efforts.

Roy H. Williams, CCE President & CEO

READ ROY’S VELOCITYOKC ONLINE STORY OF THE MONTH “OMRF MARKS 75 YEARS OF DISCOVERY” VELOCITYOKC.COM/ ROYSPICK

Our doctors taught the class and wrote the book on children’s healthcare At only 6-years-old, Liam is very well versed in matters of the heart. Born with a congenital heart defect, Liam has had three open heart surgeries under the expert care of Harold Burkhart, M.D., Oklahoma Children’s Hospital’s nationally-renown chief of pediatric cardiothoracic surgery. With expert pediatric surgeons like Dr. Burkhart, kids like Liam can receive world-class care close to home, surrounded by the people who love them. Oklahoma Children’s Hospital OU Health is the leader in pediatric care for Oklahoma and the region. Make an appointment with a pediatric specialist today by calling (405) 271-2222 or visit us online at OklahomaChildrens.org .

Sincerely,

Roy H. Williams, CCE Chamber CEO & President

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