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ND businesses asked to take part in a workforce survey

Dave Thompson
Prairie Public

North Dakota businesses are being asked to participate in a workforce survey.

"Understanding our state's workforce needs is simultaneously one of our primary challenges, and one of our greatest opportunities," said Job Service-North Dakota director and state Labor Commissioner Michelle Kommer. "This work cannot be done in a vacuum."

Kommer said the survey is the first-of-its kind, in that all of North Dakota’s businesses are invited to participate.

The state has 14,000 opening listed with Job Service-North Dakota. But Gov. Doug Burgum said the actual number of open jobs could be twice that -- even up to 30,000.

"In every community I have been in, they're short of workers," Burgum said.

Burgum said those shortages run the gamut. 

The survey will help the state’s Workforce Development Council find out where the needs are – and suggest policies to Burgum on how to address those needs.

"We've assembed a new group of partner who are very eager," said Council president Dave Farnsworth, who is with Great River Energy. "They have a fire burning in their belly to go ahead and address our workforce challenges as we have never done before."

The survey is available on the Job Service Website. Farnsworth said they’re hoping to have some recommendations to Burgum by September.