London and Area Works Job Fair aims to fill thousands of positions

The semi-annual London and Area Works Job Fair is being held at the Metroland Media Agriplex at the Western Fair District from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 26.
The semi-annual London and Area Works Job Fair is being held at the Metroland Media Agriplex at the Western Fair District from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 26.

More than 50 employers will fill the Metroland Media Agriplex at the Western Fair today in hopes of filling over 2,000 positions.

Manufacturing, food processing, technology, finance, and hospitality are just a few of the sectors that will have jobs up for grabs.

“We have a good mix of occupations across the board. We certainly have manufacturing jobs, we have maintenance, we have tourism, hospitality. We have head office jobs, as well as technology. People are also looking for software developers and head office functions,” said Kapil Lakhotia, president of the London Economic Development Corporation.

Leading employers like spice manufacturer McCormick, which is looking to fill 30 positions at Tuesday’s fair, will be waiting to meet job seekers, and answer their questions

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“It’s always good to connect with an employer in person, have a better feel for what positions they are looking for, and how to customize resumes and the applications accordingly. I wouldn’t discount the networking opportunity, and just the face-to-face meeting with over 50 employers is, I think, a great opportunity that job seekers can certainly benefit from,” said Lakhotia.

While people may be out hunting for gainful employment, according to last month’s jobs numbers from Statistics Canada, London’s jobless rate is at a near-record low at 5.4 per cent. However, London’s employment rate stands at only 75.9 per cent of the region’s population aged 25 to 54. That’s dead last among 33 major Canadian cities.

The Statistics Canada labour force survey only asks participants if they are working or looking for work, so people not actively looking for work are not counted as unemployed.

Lakhotia says the number of people without gainful employment may have to do with some confusion between job seekers and employers.

“We do understand that there are still gaps in the marketplace between what employers are looking for and what skills are available. This job fair is one of the many different initiatives underway in our workplace development portfolio that hopes to bridge those gaps,” he said.

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Lakhotia says candidates of every calibre are welcome.

“In the previous four job fairs that we’ve had experience with over the last two years, we’ve had a great turnout of job seekers that range across the board from people looking for entry-level positions to more senior, experienced positions, as well as across different industry sectors. [For example], occupations in the manufacturing sector vary significantly from those in technology and finance,” he said.

If you don’t know exactly what job is right for you, or you don’t know what to look for, 17 employment resource agencies, like Youth Opportunities Unlimited (YOU) and Hutton house will also be at the Agriplex to help.

The semi-annual job fair runs from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday

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