It’s a sign of the approaching Holiday Shopping Season: A Holiday Hiring Fair at Sawgrass Mills brought out some pretty good crowds.

But like so many other local job fairs, there were long lines, lots of paperwork but few solid offers

Coconut Creeks’ Ryan Sparkman was one of the hundreds of “unemployed hopefuls” who showed up for the Sawgrass Mills hiring event.

He says “It’s very hard to find work, there’s so much competition, so many people looking”.

Some 2 dozen retailers hung out their help wanted signs for what could be hundreds of holiday jobs.

Victoria’s Secret is looking for about 100 temps to get ready for the start of holiday shopping.

Robyn Albaum of Cache Clothing says it’s a great time to be looking for about 20 new hires.

She explains, “There so many people with great credentials it’s just incredible, we’re excited to be able to bring all the new people onboard”.

But there were almost no “actual hires” and veteran job seekers say they are not surprised they spent so much time in line and filling out paperwork and not actually getting back to work.

Shantue Lewis is a single mother of 3 who’s been looking for work for more than a year now. She believes ” You go to these fairs and speak with the companies and leave resumes and I hear nothing back. Maybe this time will be different. It’s really hard.”

So what about F-A-U student Ryan Sparkman?

He sighed at the end of the day, ” Nothing yet, but I’m hoping this can lead to something, meet the right people..say the right thing. I’m off to apply online now”.

Employers say potential new hires need to know the  process could take several weeks and possibly several more interviews.

Holiday hiring locally is forecast to remain as tight as last year, with the competition for new openings expected to be tougher than ever.



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