FAIRBORN, Ohio (WDTN) – Montgomery County and Greene County have teamed up to connect job seekers with employers. A job fair Wednesday at the Wright State University Nutter Center aims to be another tool for helping employers through the labor shortage.

Around 150 employers across the Miami Valley set up hoping to find new people to fill their open positions.

“Our company actually is looking for home health nurses, RNs LPNs, physical therapists, physical therapists, assistants, occupational therapists, people that will do an in-home care,” HR Recruiter at Summit Home Care Katherine Villanueva said.

C&W Services Account Manager Anthony Artis said recruiting now has changed from what it was before the pandemic.

“That’s why you’ve got to get a little more creative, you have to get those sponsorships, build a pipeline, you got to recruit different than you did pre-COVID,” Artis said.

Unemployment numbers in Montgomery County have also changed. Commissioner Judy Dodge said the county’s current unemployment rate is around 3.3%. Last year at this time, it was over 5%.

“I think we have such great job opportunities that we’re going to be attracting more and more people, that want these jobs, so I’m enthusiastic and I’m optimistic,” Dodge said.

Job seekers said they came to this job fair to find a company that aligns with their needs.

“I’m looking for a new position, so I thought I would just come to Wright State where I graduated from some years ago,” job seeker David Marshall said. “I’m in a better position to where I want to be a little bit more selective with my next move.”

Artis said they’ve seen more applicants asking for more money and better benefits, so their company has shifted to meet those demands.

“We are a company that is that pays well, we have a 4/10 schedule, we pay every Friday. we have benefits that start day one,” Artis said.

These employers said it’s about retaining their current staff as much as it is finding new recruits.

“We’re looking for someone is that they know they’re going to be a part of a very strong family with really good growing opportunities,” ZCI General Contracting Co-owner Daniel Zavodney said. “We’ve grown really quickly.”

Dodge said employers have to use every tool available to find employees, and sometimes it’s overcoming barriers like training. Montgomery County Jobs and Family Services is working to close those gaps.

“One of the things we do here at Montgomery County is we have a lot of different training programs, but the people have to come in and tell us what you need, what the employers need, and what the employees need,” Dodge said.

Montgomery County was at the event with their mobile workforce unit to work with job seekers on their resumes and connect with training and other job resources.