HOW ABOUT JOB FAIRS?
It seems hardly a month goes by that there is not some exposition. We have had a number of such events over the years.
All have served the interest of the business class. From GuyExpo to the Building Expo, the business community has been at the forefront of these expositions and it is the business community that mostly benefits from these activities.
The Building Expo, for example, highlighted products that enticed the small man to build and redecorate their homes. The biggest windfall from the exposition was the additional sales that the business community obtained from being able to advertise their products.
The small man could only look and dream at some of the products on display, many of which were too expensive for them. Some individuals even admitted that they went there to look at some designs which they can have made for them at a cost far cheaper than what was being advertised at the exposition.
In the main, these expositions are not for poor people. What is therefore needed in Guyana is a small man’s exposition, an exposition for the working class.
The greatest need of the working class in Guyana today is jobs. Workers want to be respected. They want to be able to work for what they earn. They are not looking for freeness and handouts. They want jobs.
The next exposition held in Guyana should be organized by the Ministry of Labour and should take the form of a job fair.
A job fair allows for businesses from all over to advertise the vacancies that may need filling. And it allows those seeking jobs to be able to see what is available and to apply for these jobs. But better yet, if there is a one-stop-shop process at a job fair where jobs are advertised, the applicant makes his application, is interviewed, short listed or given the job right there on the spot.
Even the government can come on board. There is a great need for skills within the government. For example, the Ministry of Legal Affairs needs persons skilled in drafting legislation. This need not be a full-time job, neither is there any need for the person to be resident in Guyana. The service can be provided online. By advertising the position or positions, some Guyanese living overseas and qualified in legal drafting may apply, and may be able to place before parliament far more legislation.
The Ministry of Human Services says it needs psychologists. Perhaps they can find a few through a job fair or even encourage persons to take up studies in psychology. If the demand is great, the University of Guyana may even see the wisdom in starting up a degree in human psychology.
There are many schools throughout Guyana in which specialist teachers are not available. Yet there are specialist teachers out there who need jobs and who can fill these vacancies. This is where a job fair can help.
But perhaps the greatest benefit that a job fair can have is providing jobs for the thousands who are looking for employment in the construction sector. It is amazing the amount of houses that have been built in this country and yet many persons complain about not finding construction jobs.
And contractors make the opposite complaint: they say that they are struggling to find labourers. In some cases they have to advertise for such persons.
The solution, therefore, may be to have a job fair that brings together contractors seeking workers and workers seeking construction jobs.
The problem often is one of imperfect information flows, whereby the workers do not know where jobs are available and many contractors do not know where to find good workers. At the same time, there are imperfect information flows when it comes to homeowners finding contractors and vice versa.
There are also some persons who are willing to do certain kinds of jobs which do not require academic qualifications. Some persons really do not know how to apply for some of these jobs which are advertised in the newspapers; others do not know about them because they do not regularly read the newspapers
A job fair would greatly assist. It would increase construction activities, find jobs of all kinds for job-seekers and help to reduce the unemployment rate in the country while boosting the economy. It would find jobs for all manner of individuals.
People will have jobs, and with these jobs they will be able to take care of their families.
The Ministry of Labour should seriously consider job fairs in each region.