Advice Needed: Where are all of the Customer Service Reps?

Last year around this time, Dawson had a Customer Service Open House - we advertised on job boards, our website and spread the word on our personal social media accounts.  This brought us about 30-40 people that we were able to help! 

Today, we abide by the same rules and hardly have anyone walk through our door…what are we missing?

Has anyone else experience this struggle?  It comes with the Staffing territory, I know, but this "drought" seems to be lasting longer than normal.

How do we find those top notch Customer Service Representatives?

Views: 155

Comment by Steven G. Davis on November 8, 2011 at 2:04pm

They are sitting at home on Unemployment. Our gov't has seen fit to keep extending Unemployment benefits. Their was a job fair last week in Portsmouth NH and they had a total of 15 applicants show up. Quite the contrast from the summer of '09 when we had a job fair and there were over 10,000 candidates that showed up. I do think it is a symptom of a larger problem. I had three candidates this week so far turn down a temp to hire gig.

The pay was 15.00/hr, which is not bad with a possible bump of 1.00-2.00 after conversion and what did I get, "well I am on unemployment and your job is not paying close to what I should be making." 

It is not the number one issue, but I consider it to be close to the top!.


Best of luck!!



P.S.: We postd a job ad on Craiglist a couple of months ago in Tucson, AZ and within 3 days we had over 400 applicants. I think it is definately dependant on geography and what is happening in that local economy..

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on November 8, 2011 at 5:07pm

Unfortunately Steve is probably right... I ran into this issue time and again when I worked for the state employment agency. It's very frustrating. If you haven't already try to develop a strong relationship with your local workforce development office - they can and should be encouraging people to take even temporary positions and can set issues with unemployment if candidates refuse.

Comment by Glenna Halligan on November 8, 2011 at 5:13pm

Thank you for your comment, Steve.

It is amazing how important timing is and it is such a shame that people choose unemployment over going to work.  Timing and location are everything when it comes to connecting with job seekers.  Seems like we are not alone with the "drought" of finding those top notch candidates.  Yes, also depends on the local economy!  I appreciate the discussion and here's hoping things turn around!   

Comment by Glenna Halligan on November 8, 2011 at 5:15pm

Amy, thank you for the comment!

Yes, having that local connection is key and we definitely see all the signs of people trying to work around getting off of their unemployment.  Seems crazy, but it's so true...people would rather collect than work.  We will just have to keep pushing through and hope that they have to come to us...and soon!

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on November 8, 2011 at 7:13pm

isn't it nuts? 9% unemployment, people are occupying city streets (apparently because they don't have jobs) and here we are chasing down candidates wherever we can get them. Something does not compute. :)

Comment by Steven G. Davis on November 8, 2011 at 7:16pm

Amy and Glenna,

That is a complete mystery. Of course if you take out the homeless and the Anarchist, then the Occupyers are few. But you are 100% correct, it doesn't make sense!!


Comment by Sandra McCartt on November 9, 2011 at 1:48am
Here is the catch 22. If someone was making 40 to 50k they are drawing between 400 and 500 a week unemployment. Probably using what savings or severance to supplement while looking for close to what they were making before layoff. If they take a temp job benefits stop and they still have to use savings if their bills are based on what they were making. They will continue to look which of course is more difficult if they are working and a lot of people do not want to take a job they know they will quit the minute something better comes up. Until unemployment runs out they would rather draw that, have time to look, go to school etc.

If people could work temp and still draw partial unemployment the whole system might function better at reduced cost and enable employers to do some effective temp to perm hiring. Leave it to the gubment to put a catch 22 in the deal that makes it harder all the way around.
Comment by Glenna Halligan on November 9, 2011 at 11:21am


Thank you for your comment and I agree, it would make things less complicated if their could be a happy medium.  I suppose that isn't coming anytime soon and we just have to hope for the best!  Things are slowly, but surely, picking back up and here's hoping that means more job seekers knocking on our door!

Comment by Glenna Halligan on November 9, 2011 at 11:22am

Steven and Amy,

Yes, it's crazy and we will just all have to find them one by one! Cross our fingers!

Comment by Amy Ala Miller on November 9, 2011 at 12:27pm

@Sandra in WA they can draw a partial benefit or at the very least the amount awarded doesn't diminish. I've worked with people who had their initial 6 month benefit amount last over a year because they took whatever temporary work they could in the meantime. Of course that varies state to state but I can speak for WA and tell you our state government / agency (that I used to work for!) does a TERRIBLE job of telling job seekers that.


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