Duluth struggles to retain talented workers

Duluth, like many cities and towns in Greater Minnesota, continues to struggle to retain and attract intelligent and skilled labor. The port city boasts institutions of higher education, but fails to keep the best and brightest.

There are indications that the so-called brain drain is lessening, but over the next 10 years an estimated 75,000 positions will need to be filled in Eastern Minn. and Western Wisc., so to increase their chances of recruiting talented workers during that time the City of Duluth is striving to create a more streamlined hiring process. The Duluth News Tribune reports the update is long overdue.

That’s because the city’s civil service code used in hiring the majority of the city’s 825 employees was created in the 1940s. It has received minor updates over the years, but it’s slow and cumbersome, and it sometimes causes the city to lose the best candidates for a job, according to a recent report from the Mayor’s Workforce Recruitment Task Force.

The current hiring process for the city, according to the paper, ranges between six and 18 months.