Southeast Nebraska manufacturers see comparisons, as they seek to fill jobs

BEATRICE – Several Beatrice-area industries recently participated in a survey aimed at addressing workforce shortage concerns.
Gage Area Growth Enterprise Executive Director Trevor Lee said the confidential survey drew interest from about sixteen companies, who provided information on wages and benefits.

"Eight of those were within Beatrice....the remaining within one hour. Basically, to get a high-level review of where they're at, based on job descriptions. We received 250 job descriptions from those sixteen manufacturers. We were able to condense that down into fifteen separate job categories....what their entry level and experienced wages were...and a high level view of where they're at for their health insurance premiums...and employer participation. This was spurred by requests from some Beatrice manufacturers."

As the nation fights through the coronavirus pandemic, some businesses and industries have had difficulty finding enough workers. Lee says he was pleased with the survey response. The individual company information is kept confidential, but the overall statistics provide a public view at the types of jobs and compensation available across various job positions.

"Each manufacturer that participated also got a custom report, that had the other manufacturers information, in terms of their identity scrubbed...but so they could see where they fell versus the other manufacturers."

The survey report also provided cost-of-living information.  Median entry-level wages for various positions indicated by the survey ranged from $14.50 to $31.25 per hour.