Help wanted

Throughout the United States, almost 15 million people are unemployed according to the United States Department of Labor. The latest numbers put the national unemployment rate at 9.6%, of those, about 1 in 27 have been without a job for 27 weeks or more.

Texas seems to be fairing better than the nation, the state-wide unemployment rate for September was 8.1 percent, down from 8.3 percent in August. Those rates are the lowest unemployment for the state this year.

Texas Workforce Commission Chairman Tom Pauken was quoted as saying, "Texas continued to display strong job growth across many industries in September" and that "more Texans are back to work as reflected in the lower unemployment rate."

Amarillo is home to the second lowest unemployment rate in the state at 5.3 percent . That number could improve due to two announcements on Wednesday.

United Parcel Service ( UPS ) is expecting a 7.5 percent rise in holiday shopping season deliveries. In order to deal with the expected increase in demand, the company announced they are hiring an additional 50,000 seasonal workers. ProNews 7 wanted to know if that meant job openings for our area, so we checked with the company. A spokesperson told us that 3,500 of those are planned for the state of Texas, in Amarillo, the company plans to hire an additional 25 people for seasonal help. The package delivery company isn't the only employer to hang up the "help wanted" sign in the Texas Panhandle either.

Kelly Services announced they are working with Allstate to hire at least 155 licensed sales producers by the end of this year. According to the company, licensed sales producers play a pivotal role in driving business for Allstate agencies in a growing state like Texas.

In a press release from Kelly, candidates only need a high school diploma, and exceptional selling skills. Those without a college degree were one of hardest hit groups in the economic downturn, making these jobs ideal for those in need of employment.

"These positions present such a great opportunity for talented people with strong communication and customer service skills, who may not have a college degree," said Gary Halls, Director of Operations, Office of Allstate for Kelly Services.

"We encourage interested candidates to not let the licensing process scare them off. We emphasize it's a valuable commitment to make to get a head start in a recession-proof industry."

Kelly services is working with the Texas Workforce Commission and several other channels to find qualified candidates. Interested candidates can apply at

For those still looking for employment, Pauken had this advice, "for those qualified Texas workers who remain unemployed, staff at TWC and the 240 workforce centers across the state remain committed to provide the job-search and referral services necessary to match those unemployed individuals with new jobs."

New unemployment data is expected to be released December 3, 2010.