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1,200 turn out for Manpower-sponsored Raleigh job fair

Posted February 4, 2009
Updated March 9, 2009

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— Manpower in Raleigh held a career fair Wednesday afternoon to fill newly announced job openings, and nearly 1,200 people showed up to apply for 370 mortgage-industry positions.

The jobs the staffing firm had to fill included loan document specialists, underwriters, customer service representatives and management positions.

Manpower sponsors Raleigh job fair Manpower sponsors Raleigh job fair

The number of North Carolina workers who want a job but can't find one remains at an all-time high, with nearly 400,000 of the state's residents out of work, according to statistics released late last month.

The crowd was so large at the Manpower career fair Wednesday that police officers were called to direct traffic at the 1122 Oberlin Road facility.

“I’m trying to secure myself. That's why I'm here,” job-seeker Jimesha Kent said.

Kent is still employed, but a few months ago her boss got laid off. She was his assistant and said it could be just a matter of time before she gets a pink slip.

Manpower at first had expected "in the neighborhood of 300 (people), what an average job fair would bring out,” said Cindy Chunn, Manpower spokeswoman.

Manpower officials said estimates are that about 50 percent of the Triangle mortgage market went belly up when the housing bubble burst and foreclosures soared. With mortgage rates now at an all-time low, however, a refinance boom has emerged, creating jobs.

"In light of present market conditions, Manpower is thrilled to have this opportunity to assist in building the local job market," said Michael Doyle, vice president-general manager of Manpower-Southeast.

With Manpower's job fair requirements strictly for people with mortgage and finance experience, some people got turned away Wednesday.

“I was in recruiting, so I know how it goes. A client needs somebody with a certain background. I understand how it goes,” said Ian Armstrong, who has been unemployed for about three months.

Homeowners looking to cut their monthly expenses by refinancing their mortgages should meet two primary conditions: they must have good credit and the home must be worth more than what is owed on it, said Mike Pearce, a mortgage banker with 22 years of experience.

23 Comments

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  • mstan Feb 5, 2009

    I am so sad, I don't even want to turn on the TV or read the news anymore. There is never any good news.

  • dogluvr26 Feb 5, 2009

    Sidekick, all of the coverage for it I saw beforehand said it was for mortgage positions. I went to it last night and they were very clear about it there too. I thought it was actually a really good job fair. Sure, there were a lot of people who showed up and (based upon their appearance) probably had nothing to do with mortgage work, but that happens at every career or job fair I've been to. People just don't pay attention or are so desperate for work they'll go to everything. Besides, there was security doing crowd and traffic control, so it wasn't that bad. I'm hopeful it turns into something good because I sure need it.

  • Sidekick Feb 5, 2009

    Apparently Manpower doesn't know how to advertise with job openings. Obviously there were not looking for medical or construction or sales. It was for mortgage experience. If they had, they probably would have gotten about 300 people.

  • Pseudonym Feb 5, 2009

    One thing I've learned is that if you are a job seeker, you are in a sales position. If you contact the company and then wait, you will never hear back from them. But if you bug them with constant calls and emails, the squeaky wheel gets the grease.

    Plus, it doesn't hurt to be qualified for the position you are applying for :-)

  • parr4246 Feb 5, 2009

    TheAdmiral.......""I work for a staffing organization, if you have not been called it means you do not fit ANYTHING"

    That is a load of brown smooshie stuff.."

    so why don't people get called, once they register with a staffing organization/company....????

  • parr4246 Feb 5, 2009

    guess someone has trouble counting............last night it stated 1,500 turned out, this morning it says 1,200 turned out........which is it....????

  • computer trainer Feb 4, 2009

    This has been talked about since the weekend, BUT they have never said how they were going to do this, nor what the requirements were going to be. If they had put out the requirements on their website, or to the media and announced this earlier, then the police would not have had to direct traffic. This was a case of a company not doing their homework up front. Knowing that there are 400,000 people out of work in NC, they should have expected that as many as could would try to show up for this when it was announced.

  • TheAdmiral Feb 4, 2009

    There was no advertisements outside of Manpower's office. It was not listed with the NCESC. So that means they were not looking for many people.

    Since Manpower is taking 56% of what they are paid and then in turn turning around to pay their employee 40% of what is left, I can see why they don't want to advertise a $20,000 job when they are paid $80,000 or more.

  • TheAdmiral Feb 4, 2009

    "I work for a staffing organization, if you have not been called it means you do not fit ANYTHING"

    That is a load of brown smooshie stuff..

  • westral Feb 4, 2009

    All I wanna know is who was the cute guy WRAL talked to at Manpower?!

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