Louisiana is standing at the last place in terms of COVID recovery related to jobs losses. Hence, t is difficult for them  to get back to pre-COVID level for many years. Unemployment benefits of $300 was also ended but it did not result in expected job flooding. Louisiana became the first Democratic governed stated to opt out of the unemployment benefits.

Slow Employment Recovery

Louisiana State has only managed to recover 38% of all jobs lost due to pandemic. The employment levels of seven of the nine metros is still 5% or more below from 4th quarter of 2019.  Gary Wagner reported this in Acadiana business economist at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

Major Challenges

Further, Wagner noted that employment numbers sharply reduced due to Hurricane Ida’s effect. Ida has affected employment numbers in Houma/Thibodaux and New Orleans metro. “At the current pace of recovery, most metro areas will not fully regain their COVID job losses for several years,” Wagner wrote in his quarterly report. The report further stated that statewide growth will increase at an average of 1.6% during the next five quarters. As this pace, Louisiana State may not achieve pre-pandemic levels until the first quarter of 2021.

3,400 jobs were added across the state during the third quarter. Yet, the state added 160,000 fewer jobs than it did in the fourth quarter of 2019. This reflects to 8% drop in state’s employment. In September alone Louisiana’s employment numbers dropped by 1.6% to 1,818,000 which is lowest since September 2020.  Financial sector, wholesale trade, oil and gas extraction and manufacturing lost most of the jobs. State’s unemployment numbers also declined more than the projected number of 6.8% during the third quarter. The number stood at 6.2%. However, it does not include the growing number of people who have exited the workforce. By factoring in that in total, the unemployment rate will be at 9.7%.

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Rural Sourcing Is Opening a Development Center in Louisiana. They announced that the Atlanta based company is establishing a new software development center in Baton Rouge. This is an Atlanta-based outsource software company which was established back in 2009 and it is providing IT services to a wide variety of clients. Their clients include Southwest Airlines and Enterprise.

Direct & Indirect Jobs

The new software development center is expected to create 150 new jobs and will pay an average of $75,000. Rural Sourcing will immediately begin the hiring process for its Baton Rouge software development center. Louisiana Economic Development estimates that this new venture will create 166 new indirect and 150 direct jobs. There will be addition of 316 jobs in Louisiana’s Capital Region. The company will hire full stack developers and other roles related to website development. The company have already posted multiple online vacancies for its Buffalo office. These positions include project managers, web developers and business analysts.

Areas of Expertise

The Software company provides multiple services to its clients. They include a variety of digital engineering services, application development, data analytics, cloud migration application security and many more. “We chose Louisiana, and specifically Baton Rouge, because of its broad and diverse talent pool and more than 50,000 graduating students in the region,” CEO said. Buffalo was chosen over more than 50 other metro areas for the project and areas of Queen city and Baton Rouge were selected for expansion by Rural Sourcing. The company is setting up a temporary office in Downtown Buffalo while they are searching for a new home for its local headquarters. The company have their offices in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Augusta, Georgia; Fort Wayne, Indiana; Jonesboro, Arkansas; Madison, Wisconsin; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Mobile, Alabama, and Oklahoma City.

An incentive package is provided to the company by State of Louisiana. In addition to that, the company is also receiving an award from the Louisiana’s Digital Media and Software Development program.

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