ST. PAUL -- Area businesses are still looking for more help, and it may be impossible for Central Minnesota to fill every open job.

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The latest report from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) shows business in central Minnesota posted more than 21,000 vacancies in the fourth quarter of 2021, the latest report available. Central Minnesota reported an 8.1% vacancy rate, are more than eight open positions for every 100 filled jobs.

DEED reports based on the numbers, it’s impossible to fill every opening in the current labor market.

With 21,410 job vacancies reported, there are 52% more job vacancies than the previous high recorded in 2019.

While that worker leverage has caused significant wage growth, inflation is now at a 40-year-high and is cutting into any raises. DEED reports the median wage offer for all positions is $17.26. The real median wage, adjusted for inflation, is $11.28, just 17 cents higher than it was in 2019.

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