DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – With Thanksgiving and Christmas right around the corner, many local businesses are struggling to find workers. In an interview with 2 NEWS, Lt. Governor Jon Husted calling the struggle “problems of prosperity,” saying that with a booming economy and more jobs comes constant competition for employees.

“We’re creating jobs faster than we can find people to fill them. That’s across all sectors of the economy. Manufacture, health care, retail. Everybody seems to be hiring, nobody can find enough to meet their needs for the most part,” said Lt. Gov. Husted.

Lt. Gov. Husted also confirmed that in Ohio currently, we’re actually experiencing 34% fewer unemployed Ohioans than pre-pandemic times. “We had 71,000 back before the pandemic started. Now, we only have 47,000 people on employment.”

At The Dorthy Lane Market in Washington Township, Store Director Fred Pfieffer says the holidays are busy, making staffing a top priority. “Everybody likes to celebrate for the holidays especially after last year. We have had a little bit of a struggle keeping enough staff, but I believe we’re getting there. We also have a lot of college students that’ve worked here in the past that come back and help us during the holidays.”

Pfieffer says the location has around 300 employees, and the issue isn’t in applications but people actually coming in for interviews. “A lot of people that’ll apply for a job. We call them in for an interview and they don’t show up. We’ve had quite a bit of that in the past year or so.”

In Montgomery County, Business Services Public Information Officer Michael Zimmerman says he and his team are currently recruiting for 54 local companies looking to hire more than 1,300 employees. “It’s a little bit of the pandemic. It’s a little bit of just a great market for employees. A tougher market for people trying to hire,” said Zimmerman.

In hopes of attracting more employees, Lt. Gov. Husted says employers have started adding more attracting benefits to jobs. “We will continue to see wages and employers offer bonuses. Flexible work hours to try to accommodate the need they have to find anybody to come to work.”

Barry Staffing owner Doug Barry says the hope is that certain people who work seasonal jobs will switch to retail during the colder months. “A lot of the folks who’ve been working outside are starting to come back inside those seasonal jobs, where outdoor jobs are starting to come to an end. That might help some of the retailers over the holiday season that’s coming up.”

Ohio Council of Retail Merchants Public Affairs Manager Alex Boehnke says with the benefits that retail managers are offering, the hope is these positions will be filled during the holidays. “So, I think our members are doing what they can to make sure they’re gonna be stacked up and making sure customers are able to have the experience.”

Lt. Governor Husted also pleading with people who might not be looking for jobs to lend a hand to local businesses.

“Help a local employer whos really struggling and having a hard time. Even if you take a part time job you’re really doing a community service by helping some of your local employers.”