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Lakeland Job Fair in the air

The Lakeland Regional Job Fair is up in the air for another year after a poll hosted by local chambers resulted in fairly inconclusive results.
The Lakeland Regional Job Fair is up for discussion this year after a poll hosted by the organizing committee came back with split results.
The Lakeland Regional Job Fair is up for discussion this year after a poll hosted by the organizing committee came back with split results.

The Lakeland Regional Job Fair is up in the air for another year after a poll hosted by local chambers resulted in fairly inconclusive results.

Cold Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce executive director Sherri Bohme said if the event doesn't go ahead, this will be the second-consecutive year without the job fair.

“Previously, we were hosting a job fair annually, but of course the economy has taken a bit of a nose dive, so there wasn't really a need for it,” Bohme explained. “We created the poll to determine whether there was going to be a need for it in 2018.”

The regional survey revealed that nearly 30 per cent of respondents were hiring, while a further 58 per cent stated they're planning on hiring within the next six to 12 months.

Almost 55 per cent responded they were already receiving enough qualified resumes for the positions open, with over 50 per cent admitting they weren't interested in a job fair this spring.

Over 22 per cent said they would benefit from hosting a fair, while another 22.5 per cent were undecided.

With the results as close as they were, it's back to the drawing board for the Lakeland Job Fair Committee, who has to decide whether or not to forge ahead with a 2018 event.

“The feedback we saw has pointed in the direction that businesses are receiving quality resumes, and there wasn't a great number hiring within the first six months.But, they're optimistic to say they will be hiring six to 12 months down the road. At this point, it hasn't been determined if we will host a job fair or not,” Bohme said.

Tanya Oliver, executive director for the Bonnyville and District Chamber of Commerce, said the results show some interest, however the fair may need to be scaled back based on the poll outcome.

Whether that's the case will be discussed by the committee later this month.

“We may do it on a smaller scale based on the results, but that really needs to be determined by the committee,” Bohme said.