Barberton adds ‘Jobs Gateway’ in effort to connect employers and job seekers – Akron Beacon Journal

Barriers are created from large rolls of vinyl sheets at MAG Resources last year in Barberton. The company is one of several Barberton employers participating in the city's "Jobs Gateway" effort to link employers with employees.

Looking for a job?

Live in the Barberton area?

If so, you might want to add the Barberton city website to your employment search kit.

After hearing from local businesses about the difficulty they’re having filling open positions, the city added what it’s calling a “Jobs Gateway” to its online presence.

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The gateway came after brainstorming ideas to help connect workers and employers, Mayor William Judge said.

The idea was conceived a couple of weeks ago after executives at some of the city’s major employers told him they weren’t able to find workers to fill positions.

The labor shortage stretches across the U.S., forcing some establishments to close and slowing production at others. It has contributed to shortages of everything from chicken to housing to condiments.

The mayor said he wanted the city to do something to help.

The city of Barberton recently added a "Jobs Gateway" icon, lower right, to its website. The gateway leads to job openings at companies located in the city.

“At some point, we have to step in and do what we can,” Judge decided. “[We] reached out and said, ‘Are you interested?’ and they all said, ‘Yes.’ ”

The gateway, accessible through a circular icon about halfway down the city’s main page, contains a list of companies with a link to their current job openings.

So far, the gateway lists employers in the manufacturing, hospitality and health sectors. It contains some of the best-known names in the city, with some of the largest and smallest employers. The jobs vary widely, as do the requirements.

The link to Howmet Aerospace, for instance, contains dozens of jobs throughout the country, with eight in Barberton. The Barberton facility includes open positions from entry level jobs to supervision.

Judge said the city’s not looking to compete with job search and placement establishments but wanted to add another tool to the mix for job seekers.

“We work with a lot of the temp agencies,” the mayor said. “We’re not here to compete with them, we’re just trying to get these positions filled.”

As far as internet wizardry goes, the gateway is rudimentary, displaying a company logo and linking to companies’ job listings on their own websites. But the mayor said its simplicity is also a virtue because the updates are made by the companies and not the city’s bare-bones IT crew.

“The beautiful thing is there is no change on our side, [but] they can make multiple changes,” he said.

Smaller companies that use a social media page instead of a website also can participate, Judge said. One employer only had an Indeed listing, and the city was able to accommodate them.

“We got that request and made sure it works,” he said.

When explaining the gateway to City Council on Monday night, the mayor was asked about companies that only use Facebook. Those establishments also welcome, he said.

“[We’ve] got some small sole proprietorships,” he said. “Everyone’s included.”

He anticipates the listed companies will grow; on Monday, three more establishments asked to be added.

“As far as I know, it’s unique to Barberton,” the mayor said.

Leave a message for Alan Ashworth at 330-996-3859 or email him at Follow him on Twitter at @newsalanbeaconj.

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