Businesses look to hire for holidays in midst of low unemployment rate

ARDMORE, Okla. (KXII) Best Buy regional distribution center in Ardmore usually has 200 people on staff but say they need 450 more workers for the holidays, which may be difficult to achieve due to the low unemployment rate in Oklahoma.

Human resources manager Lee Heddlesten said the additional openings are for general warehouse workers and merchandise processors.

"We need a lot of people to help us process the orders that come from Cyber Monday," Heddlesten said. "We have big sales and we need help getting those packages processed and ready to ship out to customers."

But, the task to hire these workers will be difficult given the 3.5 percent unemployment rate in Oklahoma, the lowest rate in more than a decade.

The Best Buy distribution center is also competing with other distribution centers and retail stores in Ardmore looking to hire seasonal workers.

Heddlesten said the center tries to remain competitive in hiring by monitoring the culture of the workplace.

He said they know what they are up against when it comes to hiring qualified people and work to maintain their happiness.

"Even though they are temporary jobs, we don't think of them as temporary workers," he said. "We think of them as part of the Best Buy team and we really need them to deliver the holiday to our customers."

Heddlesten also said temporary hires do have the ability to become full time workers, potentially lowering unemployment in Oklahoma even further.

"The majority of our work is going to be for the months of November and December, but some people that do really good work are going to stay on with us and be part of team throughout the year," Heddlesten said.

Anyone interested applying must call or go online to Oasis Staffing or Kelly Services in Ardmore.

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