Asheville employers struggle to find enough workers

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) — The unemployment rate in a North Carolina city is so low that some companies say they’re struggling to fill open positions.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reports the unemployment rate in Asheville’s metropolitan statistical area, which includes Buncombe, Haywood, Henderson and Madison counties, was 3.6 percent in April.

Rick Elingburg of the Asheville NC Works Career Center says he can’t recall a time when employers were having such difficulty finding employees. He says demand is high in the tourism, health care, manufacturing, office-work and transportation industries.

Some Asheville companies, like the Biltmore Estate, have started looking overseas to fill positions. Some employers are also offering to pay for employees’ training.

Western Carolina University professor Angela Dills says the area’s economy has more people returning to the labor market looking for jobs.