Christmas came early for Virginia

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Cornerstone Business Group Inc 0225086119

For those of us in business, hiring qualified employees can be challenging. When the economy becomes healthy, two things happen. One, finding qualified candidates for employment becomes difficult because so many people already have jobs.

Secondly, candidates who are not working, may not have the necessary skills an employer needs. That means busy employers will need to invest in more training. That takes someone, who is active in the company, out of the game long enough to get the new hire up and running. That can be anywhere from a couple hours to a couple months. In our electrical company, it will be at least three months for a seasoned electrician to mentor a new hire to get him/her trained on our techniques and methods. That makes it difficult to hire because we're already committed to projects that are on a time-line.

These are two challenges employers face in a strong economy. The current national unemployment rate is 3.7%. That is down from 4.1% at the end of 2017. In Virginia, Christmas came early this year. The Virginia unemployment rate is 2.8%.  That is the lowest unemployment has been since April of 2001.

As a Virginian, that thrills me. It means our state has a strong economy, it also means finding good employees for future company growth will be more difficult for the immediate future. If good candidates are found, employers will likely have to pay more to get them, and keep them. That's good for employee candidates, but it may mean the average citizen pays more for goods and services from the companies that are increasing employee pay. That's simple economics.

Cornerstone is building a sister company in 2019 that will work hand in hand with the real estate brokerage. The new company will also aid other real estate agents and brokerages throughout the area. I've already started interviewing candidates for a mid-to-late January hire.

What I'm finding is that candidates who are applying, do not have the skills I need to accomplish our new company goals. Fortunately, I started talking to potential hires months ago. At this point, I have about 50% of what I need to get started. Most of January will be spent getting new employees up and running for their new jobs. This is one time where a low employment rate makes business more difficult for employers, but I'll take a 2.8% any day.


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Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good morning Mike - this booming employment picture is great news everywhere.  I means that employers have to have more training and development in place.

Dec 24, 2018 06:10 AM #1
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Virginia's 2.8% unemployment rate is something for other states to be envious of, Mike.

Dec 24, 2018 08:37 AM #2
Bill Roberts
Brooks and Dunphy Real Estate - Oceanside, CA
"Baby Boomer" Retirement Planner

Hi Mike Cooper I am a firm believer in growing employees from the ground up.

Everybody can learn, but not everybody has the right Attitude(s).

Besides, there are more eligible candidates on the first rung than higher up the ladder.

Merry Christmas. I hope you get everything you want.
Bill Roberts

Dec 24, 2018 09:11 AM #3
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Mike - unintended consequences? I think many states/cities/people would be/are somewhat envious of Virginia. Business environment and so many other reasons. 

Dec 24, 2018 11:14 AM #4
Beth Atalay
Cam Realty and Property Management - Clermont, FL
Cam Realty of Clermont FL

Hi Mike, that's great news for Virginia, good problem to have. When I was right out of college, someone gave me a chance and I certainly didn't have the experience. I'll never forget his words, "you can train just about anyone but you can't possibly change someone's values". Wishing you all the best 




Dec 24, 2018 06:47 PM #5
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Morning Mike.

Our current rate is 3.6%.  I find that interesting as there are help wanted signs all over the place.

Dec 25, 2018 02:44 AM #6
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

I am thinking that this is an unbelievable time. We have the President who has thrown every wrench at this economy and has not yet succeeded in killing it with his "economical" escapades like the trade wars, which resulted in the worst trade balance with China...

But it will, probably, catch up with the nation, and a slowdown might be closer than we think. And this proves that Presidents have little to do with the economy, at least little to make it better.

Happy New Year

Dec 27, 2018 06:20 AM #7
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Mike Cooper, GRI

Your Neighborhood Real Estate Sales Pro
Winchester has a place for you! Call me.
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