Nationwide skilled workers shortage being felt in the upstate

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GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – What has been called an unprecedented skilled labor shortage hitting the country is being felt right here in South Carolina. In fact Governor McMaster recently announced there are around 70,000 manufacturing employers looking for workers in the Palmetto State.

Ian Ramirez is a busy man. He’s the owner of Upstate Electrical Solutions and whenever an emergency comes up, he’s ready to jump on the job.

“If a storm rolls through the night, knocked their power out, tree fell on their electrical service, I’m the guy you call,” said Owner/Operator of Upstate Electrical Solutions, Ian Ramirez.

He’s also just one of two employees with his business. He told 7 News, he’s always looking for more hands but he can’t seem to find them.

“There’s not a lot options out there. There is more work than there are people who can do the jobs,” Ramirez said.

Ramirez is far from alone. In fact he told us this is all part of an epidemic sweeping the nation.

“I definitely think there has been a stigma with the construction worker crowd, that it’s just kind of blue collar,” said Ramirez.

John Lummus with the Upstate SC Alliance said this isn’t all that uncommon to see when you have a low unemployment rate.

He finds employers to come to the upstate and he told us, last year the numbers were promising.

“We had 91 new projects last year so we’re able to find the workforce for those different projects that are coming in,” said President/CEO of Upstate SC Alliance, John Lummus.

As for Ramirez, he said his choice of profession is one of the best decisions he ever made. But he is worried about the future.

“To become a real, qualified electrician, it’s about a ten year journey. If they’re not starting right now, it’s going to be a real problem,” Ramirez told 7 News.

As Ramirez said, he is always looking for electricians. If you are interested in applying, you can visit his website: https://www.upstateelectric.com/.

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