There are about 1,000 job openings in Denver International Airport.
Denver International Airport held a discounted job fair this weekend, expected to see 5,000 eager potential employees. But only about 100 people demonstrated, underscoring the struggles companies are facing across the country.
“We’ve got a huge target to see about 5,000 people today,” said the president of the Denver Concessionaires Association (DCA). Dennis Deslongchamp told ABC 7, who helped organize the event at the United Club at Empower Field in Mile High.
Deslongchamp said only about 100 people attended Saturday’s event.
Many Chick-fil-A venues have closed their dining rooms due to labor shortages.
The job fair was intended to help fill nearly 1,000 vacancies at the airport for jobs in stores, restaurants and other businesses. Those openings also need to be filled sooner rather than later because concessions will return to normal operating hours from November 1.
“We are available here from entry-level positions all the way to top executive management,” Deslongchamp said.
There are over 150 vacancies to be filled in Skyport Hospitality alone.
“We’re on such a staff crunch that we’d be grateful to have just five, but we’re looking to hire more than 150 people,” said Alyssa Lallama, HR director at Skyport Hospitality.
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“We were expecting the public to knock on our door,” said Concession International Director of Operations Derrick Mortensen.
Concessions International has eight concession locations at the airport, including restaurants such as Chick-fil-A, and is looking to fill 38 jobs. But only two people applied, ABC 7 reported.
“These are very brick-and-mortar jobs, brick-and-mortar situations, and just a change in what is possible today to earn income,” Mortensen said. “It’s hard to fill positions at brick-and-mortar operations that were once … piles of applications.”
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The job fair was attended by representatives from about 170 concessionaires, and Deslongchamp said he wanted to give potential hires a chance to get career resources and even a coronavirus vaccine. He said job fairs would continue to be held at the airport despite the low turnout.
“We are hoping to make it an annual event,” he said.
Other retail stores and restaurants across the country have struggled to find employees in recent months, with some closing shop permanently or reducing operating hours.
A restaurant in St. Louis, Missouri, announced on Facebook last week that it was permanently closing its doors after 46 years in business for not being able to find employees.
Another restaurant owner in New Jersey, Jason Kramer of Doo-Wop Drive-In, said on Granthshala News last month that he had struggled to fill positions and pleaded guilty. Extended Unemployment Benefits Due to lack of willing workers.
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“It got worse. We struggled all summer, and I feel bad for every restaurant owner, bar owner. It’s just bad,” Kramer told “Granthshala and Friends” in September.