East Valley Career Conference brings companies and job seekers together

Last fall, the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) put out a report detailing a healthy forecast for job growth for the entire state until 2026. The state is predicted to see growth year over year at 1.7 percent, leading to new opportunities in everything from health care to engineering to IT. The report stated that in 2016 the total employment level was at more than 2.9 million jobs and by 2026 it will hit nearly 3.5 million—that’s a bump of 542,000 jobs. The county with the biggest proposed growth is Maricopa County at 1.8 percent.

That spirit of job growth was exemplified at this past week’s East Valley Career Conference held in Gilbert, where job seekers came to connect with full-time, part-time and internship opportunities. Put together by a trifecta of chambers, including Tempe, Mesa and Gilbert, the East Valley Career Conference allowed job seekers and current students to connect with some of the area’s largest and fastest-growing businesses.

The inaugural conference, which already has its wheels spinning for another conference next year, included more than 150 businesses and other local chambers including Apache Junction, Cave Creek, Queen Creek, and Scottsdale. Industry focuses included health care, banking and finance, IT and engineering, education, non-profit, and manufacturing, an industry that’s set for huge growth and optimism in Arizona in the coming years.

Representatives from the finance sector were on full display, looking for new fits for their operations in the expanding finance market in greater Phoenix. The sector has seen major growth in the last half decade, including more than 16,000 additional financial jobs. This has made Phoenix the leading city in the nation for banking and finance jobs, passing such standbys as Chicago, New York and Los Angeles.

The organizers of the event sought not only to meet the needs of inquiring job seekers, but the needs of the companies bringing their vacancies to the table, such as State Farm and local trade unions.

“The biggest challenge we hear from our businesses pertains to having enough quality candidates, so we transformed the business expo into our career fair. The feedback was that the quality of applicants coming was higher and more experienced,” Tempe Chamber of Commerce President Anne Gill said.

The event provided the opportunity for more than 250 attendees to have facetime with the exhibitors, seeking out the broad range of roles available. Some of those attendees were military veterans and active duty members looking for an opportunity to transition out of their current military duties and into a role in which they can grow their skills.


Nick Esquer

Add comment

Subscribe to the Dry Heat

Get updates on the most important news delivered right to your email. Fully personalized options. No SPAM. Unsubscribe anytime.

Sign Me Up!

Let’s Get Social

Chamber Business News wants to connect with you. Follow us, tweet, share, post, comment... however you get social is the perfect way to connect.