Tuesday, July 29, 2014 · 10:58 p.m.
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Staffing agency Robert Half International has a division in Chattanooga. Local Robert Half employee Kevin Green said business leaders are looking for ways to keep talented workers. (Photo: Staff)

As the job market starts to heat up in some industries, leaders of staffing agency Robert Half International, which has a Chattanooga office, said company leaders are looking for ways to retain talent.

“There are definitely some markets that are very, very competitive,” said Kevin Green with Robert Half Finance & Accounting, a division of staffing agency Robert Half International.

Citing the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Green said that the unemployment rate for some positions is low.

On the Web 

Articles on Entrepreneur.com and CIO.com provide more insight on the topic of retaining employees. 

For example, in the second quarter of 2012, the unemployment rate for accountants and auditors was 3.6 percent, and for human resources workers, it was 4.8 percent.

According to the latest numbers, Chattanooga's unemployment rate increased from 7.1 percent in April to 7.4 in May. And the state's rate rose from a revised rate of 7.9 in May to 8.1 in June.

Many business leaders can’t afford to lose institutional knowledge, Green said.

And although leaders may not go as far as one CEO from Denver, who recently gave
employees $7,500 to take a vacation, even smaller perks can help keep strong employees, Green said.

According to a Robert Half report, 61 percent of executives said it is challenging to find skilled talent. That is up from 37 percent last year.

And, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2.1 million people quit their jobs in May. That is up from 1.9 million a year ago.

“Even [despite] the high unemployment, there is a competitive market in professional settings,” Green said. “The second thing is—we’ve been in hard times for quite a while. A lot of companies have cut back on their workforces and added the workload to other people. That’s only sustainable for a certain period of time.”

Small things like perks in benefit packages, flexible work arrangements or the option to telecommute may help retain workers.

“Those sorts of things really speak to employees,” Green said.

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