We have gathered important information about the local labor market to help job seekers understand the current trends in the NorthCentral Region. Check back regularly for updates and a new article every month. 

Career Services

Our Career Services Team specializes in our local labor market. They have formed connections with local employers to facilitate opportunities for FSET customers. They also work with labor market experts to gather the best information available about the trends in the NorthCentral Region.

CSS Team

 Kailey Holloway

 Career Services Specialist

 (Adams, Portage, Wood)

 (715) 315 - 0191



 Megan Stanchik

 Career Services Specialist

 (Forest, Langlade, Lincoln, Marathon, Oneida, Vilas)

 (715) 216 - 0144


Let's Talk Labor Market


Excerpts from: Wisconsin Businesses Grapple With a Growing Worker Shortage

Vol 18-02

by Matthew DeFour

A Pulaski yacht manufacturer that cut 1,000 positions during the Great Recession now strains to fill 70 openings. In Neenah, a business consulting company replaces print shop workers with tech-savvy programmers, some of them working remotely in other states. At a Lancaster dairy farm a robot milks the cows 24 hours a day. A Madison restaurant has raised pay for entry-level chefs in recent years more than 50 percent to $14 an hour, but still closes on Sunday evenings — not because of a lack of customers, but because workers are scarce.

Those and countless other stories across Wisconsin are symptoms of a growing worker shortage that is expected to worsen over the next decade. Employers from a broad range of industries are reporting difficulty finding workers — and not only for skilled professionals such as nurses, welders and computer programmers, who require a strong education and training system, but also for workers with a high school diploma and some additional training at restaurants, farms, construction sites, factories, senior care facilities, retailers and other businesses.

In June [2017] the federal government reported a record 6.1 million U.S. job openings, including 1.5 million in the Midwest. Based on Wisconsin's share of the Midwest workforce, that suggests some 134,000 job openings in Wisconsin.

For the past two years job openings have consistently outpaced new hires, a phenomenon not seen during the last period of low unemployment a decade ago, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That could be the result of a general lack of applicants, a lack of skilled applicants or applicants not accepting job offers.

There are a multitude of factors contributing to the worker shortage in Wisconsin and across the country starting with historically low unemployment and the aging population, said Harry Holzer, a Georgetown University public policy professor and former chief economist at the U.S. Department of Labor.

Wisconsin's 3.2 percent unemployment rate in July [2017] is near a record low and down from a peak of 9.2 percent in January 2010. That's well below what economists consider to be "full employment" — the level at which everyone who is willing and able to work is employed, or about 4 or 5 percent.

Wisconsin also has an aging workforce. Between 2010 and 2025, the 65-and-older population is expected to have increased by two-thirds, while the working-age population is expected to remain flat. By 2023, 65-year-olds are projected to outnumber 18-year-olds for the first time.


Work Cited:


Excerpts from "Wisconsin Businesses Grapple with Growing Worker Shortage" by Matthew DeFour

To read the entire article, click HERE

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Top FSET Employers

The following are the top three employers who have hired FSET customers in 2018.  

Express Employment Professionals has locations that serve FSET customers in Tomah, Stevens Point and Weston. Since January 1, 2018, 23 FSET customers have been hired by Express! More than half of these jobs are temp-to-hire positions, with opportunities of permanent employment after a period of time.


QPS Employment Group in Wausau, Plover, and Baraboo/Mauston is the highest ranking employer for our FSET customers! With 32 employments at QPS since January 1, 2018, the options that FSET customers have with this employer are growing rapidly.


HoChunk Casino in Wittenberg, Nekoosa and Wisconsin Dells is currently our fastest growing employer. With 14 employments since January 1st and many more to come, HoChunk is a fun and opportunity-filled place to work!

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Thru 08/31/18
   2,815 People 
 have gotten jobs
In the NorthCentral
   FSET Program

Employer Spotlight


Since they were founded in 1977, Superior Diesel has grown to become one of the largest providers of engine power solutions for off-highway equipment in North America. They currently operate in 19 states throughout the Midwest, Northeast, and Atlantic coast regions of the United States. Locations include Rhinelander, WI; Seville, OH; and through their wholly owned subsidiary, Bell Power Systems in Essex, Connecticut.


Superior Diesel assembles industrial diesel, marine diesel, and industrial gas value-added engine packages just to name a few. They are an authorized dealer for John Deere, Kohler, Zenith, and Funk Drivetrain Components.


Superior Diesel makes a commitment to their employees in providing whatever is needed to promote success. They believe that the job can be taught and a positive attitude is everything. When asked why someone would want to work at Superior Diesel, Production Supervisor Eric Schoeneck said in a nutshell:


“We develop the people to develop the business”


Currently, Superior Diesel is hiring at their Rhinelander, WI facility. Open positions include Production Assembly Technicians and a Buyer.  All are first shift positions with potential overtime.

For more information regarding open positions at Superior Diesel, please visit their website at                   http://www.sdiesel.com/employment-opportunities/

If interested in any of these positions or if you have any questions, you can stop in at their facility between 8:00-4:00pm on weekdays at 3250 S. Fox Ranch Rd, Rhinelander or talk with your FSET case manager.



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Unemployment Rates

Click on the map to view the most current Unemployment Rates, by county, for Wisconsin.



NorthCentral Region Rates

(not seasonally adjusted)

 County July June May
 Adams 4.6 4.6


 Forest 4.9 54.4
 Langlade 4.4 4.23.4
 Lincoln 3.3 3.32.7
 Marathon 2.8 3.12.4
 Oneida 2.9 3.42.9
 Portage 3.3 3.72.6
 Wisconsin 3.1 3.42.6

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Hot Jobs

The following are the most in-demand fields in the NorthCentral Region:

  • Information Technology
  • Maintenance
  • Transportation
  • Sales
  • Production
  • Construction
  • Office/Admin Support
  • Management
  • Healthcare

For more information, click HERE.

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Fastest Growing Jobs (per North Central Workforce Development Board)

Please head to the NCWDB's website for more data regarding the NorthCentral region!

As you can see above, many of the fastest growing jobs are entry level positions and they pay a lower wage. But, don’t let this discourage you if this is not what you want to do long-term! Everyone needs to start somewhere.

Keep in mind that all these positions allow you to gain experience and knowledge that you can take along with you as you travel along your career path.

For example, cashiering is a growing job field with lots of potential. Note the graphics below showing two possible outcomes from starting out with a cashiering position!



Remember – every job counts!

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Address: Wood County Human Services - River Block

111 W. Jackson St., 2nd Floor, Wisconsin Rapids WI 54495  

Phone: +1 (715) 421-8608 8


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