Volusia, Flagler counties top list of US cities with worker shortage

Survey shows 54% of employers in area are in need of workers

VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. – More “help wanted” signs are showing up in Volusia and Flagler counties than anywhere else in the United States, according to a new survey.

Global hiring firm Man Power said it is because the area is dealing with a massive worker shortage.

Over the last six months, local businesses have tried to increase wages and benefits and even offering signing bonuses. Yet in this latest survey, 54 percent of employers in the Volusia and Flagler area are still in need of workers.

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“We’re interviewing anybody and everybody that we can,” Sara Afshari said.

Afshari and her family own eight Dunkins’ in the area and are building a ninth right now.

“Our particular group offers 401k, we offer health insurance. We also have other incentives like bonuses,” she said.

They also upped pay to $12 to 13 an hour. She said between all of the stores, they normally have about 10 open positions at any time.

“But given the state right now we probably have about 20 open positions,” she said.

Afshari said she’s relying on social media and word of mouth to promote jobs.

It’s not just food and service industries struggling to fill positions, though.

“We are in need of manufacturing jobs to be filled,” interim president for the FAME program with Daytona State Arthur Loeffler said.

In the program, students get paid while learning and working.

“It’s an advanced manufacturing technician program and the students go to school two days a week and work three days a week,” he said.

The program accepts 20 students and several spots are still open. It starts in August.

“We have ten companies that will be sponsoring students. They’re some of the larger companies in Volusia or Flagler county,” he said.

About the Author:

Molly joined News 6 at the start of 2021, returning home to Central Florida.