Workforce is top of mind for economic developers as lack of available workers is causing disruptions in their community’s businesses. Since the pandemic, workforce patterns have dramatically shifted in ways that none of us could have predicted. Whether it was baby boomers leaving the labor pool to retire, those who were forced to leave their jobs to address their primary role as a mother, father, or other caregiver to children, or those who just decided the grass was greener as a freelancer, the snowball effect of all of those issues and more combined left most businesses scrambling to fill open positions. Traditional means of recruitment through job posting boards, websites, word of mouth, and other methods were not working, especially if the job duties were also the more traditional schedule-bound types of positions. How do economic developers help their companies through this paradigm shift? We don’t have all the answers, but one company in Perry County did take a non-traditional leap and engage the services of a technology platform called Veryable https://www.veryableops.com/.
How does Veryable help? It is an on-demand labor platform that marries open positions in the manufacturing and distribution industries with workers who may consider themselves more in the freelancer category. Maybe it is a mom who typically doesn’t work outside of the home, but would like to get out of the house every so often and earn some extra cash for the household, or a retiree that misses the face to face connections their old job provided but doesn’t want to be tied down to a schedule, or a college student who needs some extra cash but doesn’t want to sacrifice their class schedule or extra curricular activities. All of these potential workers have one thing in common. They need to work when they want for as many hours as they want without the expectation that they must come back the next day and do it again. Enter the Veryable on-demand platform. Companies can post work they have and the days and times the work is available, and workers can select when they’re free and willing to work. Workers receive payment for their work in 24 hours and can even receive insurance benefits through Veryable if they qualify.
While not a perfect solution, the platform is solving problems for companies such as Perry County’s own Gilster-Mary Lee. CEO Tom Welge reports that his company has seen some nice impact from using Veryable. The platform works best when multiple companies and workers in a similar geographic area sign up to use the service, though. As of now, it is just Gilster using it in southeast Missouri. If you are a company looking for a solution to your workforce challenges and it sounds like Veryable could help you out, contact them! Or, Crystal Jones at the Perry County Economic Development Authority and she can give you the details. We all need to stick together if we are to figure out this workforce puzzle.