The City of Penticton is asking that all employers looking to urgently fill positions use the new COVID-19 job search tool on StartHereOkanagan.com. (File photo)

COVID-19: City of Penticton looks to fill ‘urgent’ job openings

Despite mass layoffs in some industires, others need workers more than ever during the pandemic

COVID-19 has had a huge impact on employment in Penticton, but it’s not all layoffs.

Some companies are looking to hire fast, according to the city’s economic specialist, Andrew Kemp.

To showcase these jobs, the city has launched an initiative that will help people find positions that need to be filled urgently to meet the new demands that COVID-19 has thrust upon society.

Using their regional online job posting service, StartHereOkanagan.com, the city also invites local businesses to post their vacant positions with a COVID-19 hiring-tag.

READ MORE: COVID-19: City of Penticton considering two-month property tax deferral

“We want to help our businesses hire quickly in these challenging times. The community is disrupted in many ways right now as we encourage people to stay home as much as possible. Helping to ensure that essential services and goods are available to people is critical,” said Andrew Kemp, Penticton’s economic development specialist.

StartHereOkanagan.com is a free online job listing service for job-seekers and local employers. Initially started as a tool to support employers hiring beyond the local community, it has become a very effective resource for hiring locally as well, according to the city.

“COVID-19 has created an urgent need for certain services, skills and products in a number of industries,” reads a bulletin at the top of the website.

Many of the jobs listed under the COVID-19 tag are in health-care, care homes, and retail.

The city’s economic development department is reaching out to business groups and as well as employers directly to spread the message about the initiative.

Kemp’s goal is to get all the jobs posted as soon as possible: “If you have immediate hiring needs right now, please add your postings to the StartHereOkanagan website. If you need help doing so, we are available to support you. We want to promote your open positions, but we need you to tell us who you are looking for,” he said.

The economic development department urges people to use the COVID-19 tag for any vacancy that needs to be filled urgently.

Employers can go straight to the website and upload their postings or they can contact Jennifer Vincent in the economic development department by emailing jennifer.vincent@penticton.ca.

READ MORE: One year later after the tragic shooting spree in Penticton

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