UPS says it will hire 700 workers in the Columbus area for seasonal and permanent work, the latest announcement from a company looking to bolster staff heading into the holidays.
The hiring comes as retailers expect more online sales this holiday season and will depend on companies such as UPS to deliver those goods in time for Christmas.
The logistics company said on Monday that it has openings for full- and part-time workers and is looking for everything from package handlers to tractor-trailer drivers.
UPS spokesman Dan McMackin said deliveries during the holiday season roughly double, to 32 million packages a day.
After the holidays, staffing is still needed to handle returns and a second round of spending on gift cards, he said. The National Retail Federation forecasts a 6 to 8 percent increase in online sales, to $105 billion in November and December.
Overall sales are expected to increase by 3.7 percent for those two months, to $630.5 billion. That figure excludes auto, gas and restaurant sales.
The federation expects retailers to hire 700,000 to 750,000 seasonal workers, in line with last year’s 714,000 workers.
UPS is likely to have plenty of competition for workers in central Ohio.
L Brands, for example, plans to hire as many as 3,000 seasonal workers to help with the holiday crunch at the retailer’s distribution centers.
Complicating the hiring picture locally is the low 3.6 percent unemployment rate in the Columbus metro area.
“The more screenings, the more difficult it is to find workers, especially when we get to an unemployment rate this low,” said Rhonda Arledge, regional vice president for Adecco Staffing. “A lot of people who are available are not employable because they can’t pass the screenings and can’t pass the drug tests.”
Arledge said companies hoping to hire have to offer a competitive rate of pay. While wages can vary considerably, many positions are paying 15 or 20 percent more than a year ago, she said.
Adecco wants to hire 700 to 1,000 holiday workers.
UPS previously said it will need 90,000 to 95,000 employees this holiday season.
FedEx has said it plans hire more than 55,000 workers, compared with 50,000 last year.
The jobs UPS needs to fill range in pay from $10.10 per hour for package handlers up to $26 per hour for tractor-trailer drivers. The company is hiring at three area locations: 5101 Trabue Rd., 2450 Rathmell Rd. and 2162 Reserve Rd. For more information, go to UPSjobs.com. Applicants must apply online.
This article was written by Mark Williams from The Columbus Dispatch and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.